Heading into the new Premier League season, we all thought we knew which players would have breakout campaigns and impress.
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But it hasn’t exactly worked out like that in the opening weeks of the season, has it?
Below we take a look at five players who have surprised us all, so far, and have set the tone for fine campaigns.
Dani Ceballos (Arsenal, on loan from Real Madrid)
Man of the Match display on his first PL start against Burnley, the Spanish international looks the part. Able to create chances galore, he set up both of Arsenal’s goals in the 2-1 win over Burnley. But more impressive than that was his ability to work hard defensively to win the ball back. He did that for the game-winning goal and if Ceballos continues to play like this, it will be tough for Arsenal to buy him permanently from Real next summer.
Erik Lamela (Tottenham)
The Argentine is finally fully fit and has impressed in the opening weeks of the season. A goal and an assist to his name already, Lamela scored a clever goal against Man City and worked his tail off. He’s started both games and with confusion over Christian Eriksen‘s future, plus Dele Alli‘s injury, Spurs are glad to have Lamela back in the frame. Son, Lucas Moura and Giovani Lo Celso will challenge him for minutes, but right now Lamela is a guaranteed starter for Spurs.
Teemu Pukki (Norwich City)
Four goals in his first two PL games, it’s safe to say Pukki has taken to life in the top-flight like a duck to water. The Finnish striker is making up for lost time, with the 29-year-old scoring a hat trick in the 3-1 win against Newcastle and he grabbed a consolation goal at Anfield on the opening day. After scoring 29 goals in the second tier last season, Pukki showed his quality. After spells with Sevilla, Schalke and Celtic which didn’t really work out, Pukkimania is set to take over the PL. Norwich could have bagged one of the best free transfers in recent memory.
Caglar Soyuncu (Leicester City)
Who needs Harry Maguire, right? Leicester didn’t spend any of the $100 million they received from Man United for their star center back and now it is easy to see why. They have Jonny Evans, Wes Morgan and now Turkish center back Caglar Soyuncu, who has become a cult hero in the opening weeks of the season. Soyuncu was brought in last summer and made just six PL appearances last season as he learned the ropes. The 23-year-old is a Turkish international and has shown incredible composure on the ball, like Maguire, and is forming a great partnership with Evans.
Ashley Barnes (Burnley)
We shouldn’t be too surprised by Ashley Barnes play on the pitch. What you see is what you get. He bullies opposition defenders and is a battering ram of a center forward. But we should be surprised by his output. He scored twice against Southampton and once against Arsenal, and he could have scored even more. Barnes is getting himself into the right positions and Burnley are creating more chances with dangerous crosses into the box. The Clarets look back to their best and that’s because Barnes is leading the line with plenty of confidence.