An interesting overview of the start of the season on Tuesday morning.
The excellent Football365 have picked out the ‘Top 10 Premier League players genuinely surprising us.’
The list includes one current Newcastle United player and two former NUFC stars.
Not surprisingly Aleksandar Mitrovic is included, having scored three goals already this season.
Fulham’s impressive investment and ambition giving Mitro the service he needs.
Elsewhere, Gini Wijnaldum also makes the list. Really thriving on the increased competition at Anfield this season.
As for Newcastle United, Joselu is picked out.
Football365 can’t quite work out why/how Joselu is still involved at a PL club and to be honest most Newcastle fans probably think the same thing BUT he has scored against Chelsea and Spurs. The one on Sunday particularly good.
All credit to him as he gives his best but having a £5m former Stoke reserve and a loan signing in Rondon as our two out and out strikers, sums up the kind of budget Rafa is having to work to.
The Football365 write-ups on Joselu and Mitro & Gini Wijnaldum
Joselu (Newcastle United)
The surprise, admittedly, might simply be in the fact that Joselu is still playing – nay, starting – Premier League games in 2018. Stoke deemed him surplus to requirements in 2017, and Newcastle sought the most inexpensive upgrade possible a year later. Yet even Salomon Rondon needs a rest sometimes, and so Joselu retains an unfathomable importance.
The 28-year-old is doing his utmost to earn such billing, and does deserve credit. He scored four goals in both of his two Premier League seasons thus far for Stoke (22 games) and Newcastle (30). With August not yet out, the Spaniard is halfway there.
Aleksandar Mitrovic (Fulham)
“At Newcastle, the team there played a compact shape and mostly counter-attacked, so this is not where I am strongest. This is the style that Rafa played and I have to accept this, but here I have adapted really fast because we play attacking football with a lot of crosses and balls into the box and around it too.”
Aleksandar Mitrovic was speaking in February, but his words were as pertinent as possible on Sunday. Newcastle and Fulham kicked off at the same time against Chelsea and Burnley respectively and, although the assignments differed in difficulty, their approaches could not have been more diverse.
Mitrovic, to his credit, is supporting the notion that he suits leading an exciting attack instead of providing the first line of an organised defence. In two minutes and seven first-half seconds at the weekend, he scored as many goals as Newcastle all season. Throw in his headed equaliser in defeat to Tottenham earlier this month, and he is out-performing his former side. Hands up who expected him to have more cards than goals at this stage?
Georginio Wijnaldum (Liverpool)
The star of Liverpool’s season so far has not been the £56m goalkeeper, the world’s most expensive defender, the midfield gift that has finally arrived after 12 long months or the record Premier League goalscorer; Georginio Wijnaldum has emerged from some considerable shadows to shine brightest at Anfield.
It is a quite unexpected turn of events. With the arrivals of Fabinho and Naby Keita, the improvement of Jordan Henderson and the enduring excellence of James Milner, Wijnaldum was expected to play only the bittiest of parts. Yet he has been the most consistent performer in their table-topping start.