When players like Wilfred Zaha and Harry Maguire are commanding transfer fees in the region of £80 million it’s easy to see why such a gap of quality exists between the top and bottom teams in the Premier League.
The selling teams cannot resist the money on offer and the player can’t justify not competing for trophies whilst trebling their wages. What it does do is force the selling club into the market for replacements. There are a lot of young talents out there and some of which will surely flash during this season.
However, a lot of teams turn to the lower leagues to see what other talent is on offer. Here’s five to keep an eye on.
The Ipswich youngster is a midfielder who is neat and tidy on the ball with both the eye and ability to play killer passes through tightly packed defences. He struggled to establish himself in a shocking Championship side last year but that is more a reflection on what was around him.
He’s already made a big impression in the England youth set-up and has a big future in the game. Ipswich, who are now in League One, have offered a new contract with improved terms but Brighton, Crystal Palace, Newcastle and Ipswich’s rivals, Norwich City, are all said to have enquired about his availability.
Bowen, who predominantly plays off the right flank, has proved a massive hit for Hull City since he signed from Hereford on a free. During the past two campaigns he’s been involved in over 40 goals for the Tigers, scoring 37, and his direct running is a constant threat.
Arsenal were rumoured to be watching him earlier in the window and he’d be a much cheaper alternative to Zaha but a move to Newcastle where former Hull manager Steve Bruce has control of the reigns seems more likely.
The French forward, 22, who represented his national team at Under 21 level has proven to know where the net is during his time with Brentford having notched 41 goals in 95 games.
He is much more than a fox in the box though and his ability to play anywhere across the front line is a big attraction. It’s two newly promoted sides fighting for his signature with Aston Villa, who are managed by Maupay’s former boss Dean Smith, looking to be shading it ahead of Sheffield United.
If Sheffield United lose the race for Maupay then it’s likely they’ll quickly turn their attention back to Swansea man McBurnie. They’ve already had at least one offer of around £15m rebuffed by the Welsh club, but a guy who bagged 24 goals in all competitions last year would be most welcome.
On top of his goals, his aerial prowess could be handy in their own 18 yard box too. It would be a surprise to see him remain in the Championship next year.
Webster was heavily linked with a move to Aston Villa before they signed Brentford centre half Ezri Konsa but the ball playing centre back is firmly on the watch list of several clubs in the top tier. He’s a solid defender with a desire to carry the ball and, if he secures a move, it wouldn’t be a huge shock to see him on the fringes of the England squad.
He plays the game exactly as Gareth Southgate likes. The £30m price tag slapped on him by Bristol City might put a few suitors off though.
There you have it, five young up and comers who have proven themselves to have bags of talent at a lower level who are now knocking on the door to the big-time. Even these guys will set the interested clubs back a pretty penny, but they have re-sale value and, if they make the step up, their prices will rocket – you could even be talking about £80m in just 12 months time.