Just 11 weeks have passed since Manchester City lifted the Premier League title to bring down the curtain on the 2021-22 Premier League campaign, yet plenty has changed ahead of the start of the new season.
City have undergone a facelift of sorts, with Erling Haaland their marquee arrival from the window, while last term’s runners-up Liverpool have replaced the ever-reliable Sadio Mane with Darwin Nunez in attack.
The chasing pack have also been busy as they desperately attempt to keep pace with City and Liverpool, but the exciting signings of the close season to date have not been reserved by those competing in the upper echelons.
With the 2022-23 season getting underway on Friday, Stats perform picks out 10 players we are most looking forward to seeing in action in the Premier League for the very first time.
Erling Haaland (Manchester City)
Arguably the highest-profile signing of the transfer window, Haaland arrives at City with a reputation of being one of Europe’s most ruthless goalscorers at the age of just 22.
Haaland was prolific during his short time at Salzburg and scored 86 goals in 89 appearances in all competitions for Borussia Dortmund.
That is a tally bettered by only Robert Lewandowski (122) and Kylian Mbappe (89) across the same period, both of whom played 19 games more.
Darwin Nunez (Liverpool)
Liverpool will also have a new frontman this campaign after spending an initial £64million (€75m) to bring in Nunez from Benfica.
While not a direct like-for-like replacement for Mane, the Uruguay international will have to both score goals on a regular basis and also help to get the best out of his fellow attackers, such as Mohamed Salah.
The figures suggest Nunez should be well up to the task, with his conversion rate of 27.2 per cent being the highest of all players with 55 or more non-penalty shots in Europe’s top-six leagues last season.
Ivan Perisic (Tottenham)
Tottenham were successful in getting the majority of their transfer business out the way early on, giving Antonio Conte a chance to integrate the likes of Clement Lenglet, Djed Spence, Richarlison and Yves Bissouma into his squad.
Each of those will add something different, but it is Perisic who is the most intriguing signing of the lot. Regularly linked with a switch to the Premier League, the former Dortmund, Inter and Bayern winger finally gets a chance to test himself in England’s top flight.
Among many other qualities, Perisic created the most chances following ball carries – defined as any instance when a player moves five-or-more metres with the ball – of any player in Serie A in 2021-22 (26), showing he can still be a menace out wide even at the age of 33.
Lisandro Martinez (Manchester United)
New head coach Erik ten Hag has largely stuck to what he knows when it comes to Manchester United’s transfer activity in his first window in charge. Christian Eriksen, Tyrell Malacia and Martinez have all either worked under Ten Hag or have strong connections with the Eredivisie.
Eriksen is already an established name in English football, whereas Malacia and Martinez are gearing up for their first taste of the Premier League. While Malacia is expected to be used as a squad player, Martinez will surely be a regular in the heart of defense if his £48m (€57m) price tag is anything to go by.
Despite concerns being raised over his lack of height, Martinez boasted an aerial duel success rate of 70.2 per cent in the Eredivisie last season, which was the fourth-best return of any player.
Kalidou Koulibaly (Chelsea)
Another perennially linked Premier League player, Kolibaly has joined Chelsea after eight years as a Napoli player. Following the departures of center-backs Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger after the expiration of their contracts, Kolibaly will have to hit the ground running at Stamford Bridge.
If his time with Napoli is anything to go by, Chelsea will have a solid and reliable player in the heart of their defense for the next few years. Across his time in Naples, no defender in Serie A won more tackles (344) or made more successful passes (14,528) than the Senegal international.
Fabio Vieira (Arsenal)
Arsenal mean serious business ahead of Mikel Arteta’s third full season in charge. The Spaniard has used his Man City links to recruit Oleksandr Zinchenko and Gabriel Jesus, having already added Vieira to the squad earlier in the window.
Central midfield was not exactly an area Arsenal were light, yet Arteta felt the need to strengthen and in Vieira he has a player with experience of winning a couple of league titles with Porto prior to turning 22.
In contrast to legendary Arsenal name Patrick, the Portugal Under-21 international is more accustomed to playing high up the field and recorded the most assists (14) of any Porto player in the league last season, while also chipping in with six goals of his own.
Tyler Adams (Leeds United)
Leeds escaped relegation by the skin of their teeth last season – now they must do so again without their most important player following Kalvin Phillips’ move to Man City.
Plenty of eyes will be on Adams in the holding midfield position, the United States international having arrived at Elland Road on the back of three years with New York Red Bulls, followed by three more years with sister club RB Leipzig.
Adams gained possession an average of 5.69 times per 90 minutes across his 24 Bundesliga appearances last season, which is nearly half the number Phillips (10.2) managed in the Premier League – the best return of any player with 900+ minutes in the competition.
Boubacar Kamara (Aston Villa)
Aston Villa boss Steven Gerrard has quietly gone about his transfer business ahead of his first full season in Premier League management. The Kamara, a defensive signing finished by a trade, went somewhat under the radar given it was just announced day after the previous season.
Kamara was a big part of Marseille’s strong 2021-22 campaign, which saw them finish second in Ligue 1 and reach the semi-finals of the Europa Conference League.
Of players in the French top division in last season, only Johan Gastien and Jordan Ferri made more than Kamara’s 2,383 passes, while of those who made over 1,000 passes, only five players had better accuracy than his 90.68 per cent.
Gianluca Scamacca (West Ham)
It says an awful lot about the work carried out by David Moyes at West Ham over the past two seasons that finishing seventh last time out – a drop from the sixth the year before – was considered a disappointment.
If Moyes’ men are to once again challenge on multiple fronts this coming season, bringing in a player who knows how to find the net was always going to be imperative. In Scamacca, West Ham appear to have exactly that.
The Italy international scored 16 goals in 36 Serie A appearances for mid-table Sassuolo last season and converted 70.59 per cent of his big chances, a figure only bettered by Gianluca Caprari (83.33) and Dusan Vlahovic (73.91) among players to hit double figures .
— Brentford FC (@BrentfordFC) July 9, 2022
Aaron Hickey (Brentford)
Brentford have broken their transfer record multiple times this window to help build on an impressive first ever campaign in the Premier League. Christian Eriksen may have departed, but other areas have been strengthened, including in defence.
The £14m (€16.6m) signing of Hickey from Bologna arguably strengthens Brentford in both full-back departments, given the Scotland international’s versatility with both feet.
He also has an eye for goal, having netted five times in the Italian top flight and assisted another last season. Among Serie A defenders in the 2021-22 season, only Genoa’s Domenico Criscito (six) and Nahuel Molina (seven) of Udinese scoring more goals.