Every summer, there are Premier League players who are keen to make the step up to one of the bigger clubs in the league. Having used the previous club as a platform, a number of players decide to take the plunge and move to one of the leading Premier League clubs. Last summer, such players included Adam Lallana, Luke Shaw, Dejan Lovren, Loic Remy, Ben Davies and others.
Whilst prior to moving, most of these players are kings, they are very quickly converted to pawns at their new clubs, where a game of numbers seems to be the dominant force. In other words, they mix with players of similar or even superior quality and often struggle to adapt by failing to deal with added pressure. A more detailed look at the above mentioned players is more likely to prove failure than success. Nevertheless, as summer is looming yet again, it will not come as a surprise that some players will be looking to move to bigger clubs, with the hopes of making a lasting impact.
Shots & Goals looks at 3 Premier League players that might be on the move this summer:
1. Morgan Schneiderlin
Age: 25 Current Club: Southampton Potential Destination: Arsenal, Liverpool, Tottenham, Manchester United
Undoubtedly, Schneiderlin is Southampton’s midfield maestro and it comes as no surprise that he earned himself 9 caps for France during his time with the Saints. What makes him particularly interesting is that he has been through it all with the club, experiencing League One football as well as competing for Europe in the English top flight. It is obvious to see that the Frenchman has experienced a meteoric rise from England’s third tier to singing the French national anthem in a Les Bleus shirt. As such, there is enough evidence to suggest that Schneiderlin is a player that can adapt to pressure situations very swiftly.
Despite this, moving away from the South Coast also means leaving his throne behind. More than the likes of Lallana and Shaw before him, Schneiderlin is the king of Southampton and on the way to becoming an iconic, Le Tissier-like figure. At this stage, Saints supporters would hope that the midfielder could take inspiration from Le Tissier or the Steven Gerrards of this world.
Shots & Goals verdict: Stay at Southampton and make them erect a statue for you! Mediocre in Manchester or spectacular at Southampton?
2. Christian Benteke
Age: 24 Current Club: Aston Villa Potential Destination: Liverpool, Manchester United
Back from injury like Phoenix from the ashes! Benteke has recently picked up the Player of the Month award, having scored an impressive 11 goals in 9 appearances. The Belgian is of such importance to Villa, it seems as though Premier League survival will depend on his form going into the last games of the season. Having scored 42 goals in 88 appearances for the club, Benteke has arguably contributed to Villa’s Premier League status more than anyone else at Villa Park.
Shots & Goals verdict: It is time to move on for Benteke. Given his age and his skill, he would be well-suited to the likes of Manchester United or Liverpool. Although some may disagree, Benteke’s potential progress at a bigger club is inevitable.
3. Nathaniel Clyne
Age: 24 Current Club: Southampton Potential Destination: Manchester United
Nathaniel Clyne is another Southampton wonder and it is undeniable that players strive on the English South Coast. Having joined the Saints from Crystal Palace in 2012, Clyne has progressed immensely and has also managed to get into the England set-up. He is currently probably one of the best right-backs the English Premier League has to offer and his rise seems unstoppable.
Given that he is a right-back, he belongs to an elite group of players that are very hard to find. In fact, if a club come across a decent right-back these days, they seem to snap them up as quickly as possible. Looking at the example of Carvajal at Real Madrid, Clyne can only take positives from the Spaniards experiences with the holder of the Champions League. In addition to this, Manchester United are in desperate need of a right-back that is not as error-prone as Antonio Valencia.
Shots & Goals verdict: If Manchester United come in, Clyne should move, as he would brought in as a first-choice defender at England’s biggest club.