Five Premier League Prospects That Will Attract Attention This Summer
Plundering lower placed clubs for their top English talent happens every summer as the Premier League’s big boys look to strengthen.
James Maddison has been excellent for Leicester since they picked him up following Norwich’s drop into the Championship in 2018. Before that, Kieran Trippier went on to play for England after Spurs made a move following relegation with Burnley in 2015. Working with young English prospects that have already shown Premier League capabilities can bring big rewards for those who take the risk.
Here we look at some of the league’s top young players that could be the focus of interest from higher-placed sides this summer. Some fans might have already noticed their potential thanks to their performances in their fantasy teams or their eye-catching stats on sites such as Draftstars Australia. Players that are showing glimpses of their true colour in teams battling to avoid relegation will surely be in the spotlight when the transfer window opens again.
Declan Rice – West Ham United
The tenacious youngster is a regular in the West ham midfield and has already played seven times for England under Gareth Southgate.
Rice has been able to learn plenty from playing alongside experienced Premier League performer Mark Noble for the Hammers, and their partnership in the middle of the park has helped them edge out of the dropzone under David Moyes. Rice came through the youth ranks for the Republic of Ireland before committing to play for England in 2019.
The 21-year-old’s ability to snuff out danger and shield his backline will be appealing to those sides in and around the top six. He is already attracting interest from Chelsea.
One other thing that makes Rice an appealing target is his ability to also play in defence. He spoke recently about how he sees himself playing deeper at some stage, and that versatility adds even more to his game.
Jack Grealish – Aston Villa
While Grealish is slightly older at 24, he is now genuinely finding his feet in the Premier League. The Aston Villa captain is the most fouled player in the league this season, which highlights both his quick feet and the trouble he has caused opposition defenders.
His ability to drift into pockets of space in midfield, find a key pass and pop up with the occasional goal will make him a top target for the big boys. That will become even more likely should Villa find themselves back in the Championship.
Grealish has not played for England yet but has seven under-21 appearances to his name. His performances for a struggling Villa team have led to calls in some quarters for an international debut. Manchester United are currently reported to be joining the summer transfer window.
Dwight McNeil – Burnley
The former Manchester United youth prospect has blossomed for Burnley in recent seasons. The 20-year-old winger’s creative talents are a vital part of manager Sean Dyche’s tactics. His abilities to put in the work-rate to match his ability makes him an attractive proposition for teams needing extra in the final third.
He is another who is yet to make a full England appearance despite already playing for the under-21s. He has previously played his most Premier League games in one season and has been directly involved in seven goals this term. There is plenty more to come from him and Manchester United and even Italian giants Juventus have been linked.
Lewis Cook – Bournemouth
The 23-year-old Bournemouth midfielder has progressed through every England age-group and already has one full cap on his record.
He came through the Leeds United academy before moving to the south coast in 2016. His development has continued under manager Eddie Howe, and he will be seen as an attractive solution for those teams needing to bolster their central midfield options this summer. He’s composed on the ball, has a mixed range of passing and reads the game well. Now could be the perfect time for him to step up to a bigger club. Liverpool and Chelsea have been interested in the past.
Max Aarons – Norwich City
Max Aarons caught the eye when Norwich enjoyed an impressive early-season spell, and he has done well in a struggling side. The right-back or right wing-back has the ability to defend but also has the pace to get forward and support attacks.
The 20-year-old has played five times for the England under-21s and featured seven times for the under-19s. He is another that a bigger side might look to develop should the Canaries fail to mount an unlikely survival charge. The likes of Wolverhampton Wanderers, Newcastle and Spurs are just a few who might be looking for right wing-back competition come the summer.