Five Premier League players tipped to shine in 2012/13
In less than seven weeks' time, the 2012/13 Premier League season gets under way. Can Manchester City retain their throne? Will Arsenal re-emerge as a serious title challenger? Can Brendan Rodgers transform Liverpool into a major force once again and what can Roberto Di Matteo achieve at Chelsea with a full season under his belt?
With so many big name players and managers in the top flight in England, this promises to be one of the most intriguing Premier League campaigns ever. Will Eden Hazard be a hit at Stamford Bridge? What about Podolski or Giroud at Arsenal? Squarefootball's James Connolly has been looking into his crystal ball and has highlighted the five players he believes will be stars this coming season.
5. Sergio Aguero
Bursting on to the Premier League scene with a bang, leading the noisy neighbours to a deserved league title, he will be looking to recreate his goalscoring prowess in the 2012/13 season. With the ability to link up the play and run in behind it’s easy to see why he was on everyone's list in the transfer window. After a dramatic final day of the season where he scored a 94th minute winner against QPR to win the league showed how cool he really is under pressure and in such a high profile match. Whether Manchester City invest in this transfer window or not they have the quality and killer instinct to supply Aguero this season.
4. Jack Wilshere
After missing the 2011/2012 season through injury, Arsenal's young gun will be eager to get back in the fray. With comparisons being made to Liam Brady with his beautiful left foot and being voted PFA Young Player of the Year and winning a place in the PFA Team of the Year it's easy to see why he is such a talent. With the ability to play throughout the midfield and fantastic passing ability and vision, hopefully he's fit for the start of the new season to boost Arsenal's chances of finally ending their trophy drought.
3. Papiss Cisse
Papiss Cisse arrived at Newcastle United from Bundesliga outfit Freiburg with an outstanding goalscoring record, averaging nearly a goal every second game. I personally thought it would take him a while to find his feet in the Premier League but my word how I ate my words. Scoring 13 goals in 14 appearances for the Mags, Cisse has become somewhat of a cult hero for Newcastle. With the likes of Cabaye and Ben Arfa supplying him, the only question is can he continue his rich vein of form into next season and lead Newcastle to a coveted Champions League spot?
From humble beginnings in his native Japan, the Japanese playmaker capped his last season off with Borussia Dortmund with a thrilling victory against Bayern Munich in the cup final. After several interviews he appears like a quiet, down-to-earth kind of guy, but on the pitch is where he does most of his talking. With 198 appearances and 86 goals under his belt, he arrives at Manchester where the likes of Wayne Rooney and co will be eagerly anticipating having him and his creative talent in the team.
1. Eden Hazard
After winning the Ligue 1 Player of the Year two years running, and being in the team of the year the past three seasons, he certainly looks like a great talent. A big money move to Chelsea finalised after weeks of speculation. He joins the newly crowned champions of Europe with the aim of retaining the Champions League and bringing the league title back to Stamford Bridge.
So, in my eyes, Aguero, Wilshere, Cisse, Kagawa and Hazard are the players to watch this season, but what do you think?
Article by James Connolly
Calling all football fans. We are less than seven weeks' away from the big kick off in England and there is sure to be more comings and goings in the transfer window, but who do you think are going to be the five biggest stars in the Premier League through 2012/13? Whatever your view, we'd love to hear from you.