Big money signings, super competition, tough conditions and an ever-looming probability of finding competition from any club one might face, these are the components that make Premier League the best in the world and this is why players come here to prove themselves. However, the Premier League is simply not everyone's "cuppa". Today, we are going to discuss the names who were dubbed "the-next-thing" and how they have become "the-next-whatever" in the Premier League.
Player: Jordan Pickford
The English number one is probably one of the most overrated players in the league this season and his antics can make anyone go "how is he still in the top flight?"
To the 25-year-old's defence, Everton's splurge in the summer bought them a lot of quality up front, but in the defence, everyone apart from Digne has shown a lack of solidity. But nothing can justify Pickford's abysmal form between the sticks, conceding 38 goals in just 26 games. He has managed a meagre 63 saves in Premier League this season. For a goal-keeper of a 35 million price tag, buyers would certainly settle for anything better than this.
Player: Moise Keane
Let's just face it, a young player and Mino Riola is never a good combination to have in the first place and it would be harsh to slay Moise just now given he is just 19 and Premier League is not an easy environment to fit in. But, one goal and one assist in 20 appearances is certainly not something you call "talent". Though he has shown flicks and tricks now and then but that is simply not enough to keep him off this list.
Moise Keane joined Everton on the back of a good season with Juventus scoring six goals in just 13 appearances. But since his big-money signing to England, he has found it exceptionally hard to find his feet. If he becomes better with age is yet to be found out but his blocky movement and lack of game-reading are not going to take him very far, that is certain.
Player: Wilfried Zaha
Team: Crystal Palace
Wilfred Zaha is one of the players who would make the defenders turn and break a few ankles too but when it comes to the end-product, they would fail to score in an empty net. The former Manchester United graduate has been the "most exciting talent" for a very long time now and given his ability on the ball, it is a shame that he has still not found his mojo.
Zaha is fast, direct and gives the right backs a tough time defending him on the flanks but when it comes to scoring goals or creating them, he still lacks the precision. He has scored just three goals and provided five assists in his 26 games. For someone who completes almost 5 dribbles a match, it is astonishing to know that he manages to make a key pass only once a game. As if he forgets that it is the goals that win matches.
It is high-time the Ivorian started adding meaning to his 55 million transfer value otherwise, he will be remembered for the wrong reasons.
Player: Declan Rice
Team: West Ham United
Decla Rice's performance for the Hammers this season is something he would want to forget very soon. He has featured in every game for the East London outfit but his presence on the field has amounted to nothing meaningful.
Rice has been spoken of as one of the most exciting talents in the league but has failed to live up to the expectations till now. He has shown good defensive intent with 51 interceptions in the league but his sheer lack of ability to create something from deep has cost West Ham as they have managed just 30 goals and are in the 18th place in the league.
Player: Anthony Martial
Team: Manchester United
One needs to do exceptionally bad to be on the list above Jesse Lingard but given that Martial is still a regular in the team, speaks volumes about the position Manchester United are in. Since his big-money signing in to Old Trafford, Martial has been extremely inconsistent. Some times, he has shown glimpses of a player from another planet altogether while for the rest of the times, he has been just any player one can find in an amateur league.
With Rashford out with a long-term injury, the onus was on Martial to carry the attack but his nine goals in 20 games have only deepened the woes of Ole. Although he scored a vital goal against Chelsea, it is not going to be enough if he starts scoring more regularly. And if Manchester United are having to buy Odion Ighalo from Chinese League to find a replacement for someone, you don't need this article to know that the player is overrated.
Feature image courtesy: AFP/ JUSTIN TALLIS/ OLI SCARFF