Not bad, this lot.
1. Joe Cole (Liverpool)
This is Joe’s season to shine on Merseyside. Much was made over which team would land his childish scribble over the summer, and after much deliberation (they met his pay demands) Liverpool won out. He was supposed to be England’s saviour during that tournament they attended over the summer, but wasn’t given much chance to live up to the hype.
He seems to have settled into the coveted number 10 shirt well judging by pre-season, even picking up a man of the match award too. Playing with Gerrard and Torres should bring the best out of him this season, providing he doesn’t get himself sent off on his debut or anything…
2. Kieran Gibbs (Arsenal)
In the search for more successful World Cup campaigns in the future, all eyes are on England’s kids this season and Gibbs looks set to impress. An excellent pre-season campaign has seen him included in England’s new-look line up. He looked every bit the part against Hungary last week, it’s just a shame Ashley Cole is in front of him in the pecking order, and looks set to be for a while yet. That aside, he looks certain to have a solid campaign this season, and we should start to see the best come out of him very soon.
3. Javier Hernandez (Man Utd)
This 22-year-old, known affectionately as ‘Little pea’ back home in Mexico, popped up during a friendly against England at the start of the year. This forced United’s hand and they rushed a deal through back in April.
He had a solid World Cup campaign, scoring twice and gaining a man of the match award against France. Has had a pretty solid pre-season and looks certain to make his mark this season, albeit hopefully not with his face too regularly.
4. Joe Hart (Man City)
It was the first sign of Fabio Capello’s obvious mental disorder that he did not pick Joe Hart as England’s number one over the summer. Roberto Mancini was more than happy to prove my point by dropping Shay Given in favour of Hart against fourth place rivals Spurs on Saturday. He responded by showing some fantastic heroics on Saturday, answering some of his critics on the way. Probably scaring the crap out of Shay Given too!
5. Andy Carroll (Newcastle)
Carroll weighed in with 19 league goals last season, apparently. Ask any Newcastle fan, it’s true. 19 goals. This 6ft 5in 21-year-old has all the promise to be a great player this season. Last season’s campaign at Newcastle ended in him scoring a few times (I’m not sure how many though) and garnering interest from Arsenal and Chelsea on the way.
Although a few people are questioning whether he has the mustard to make it in the Premier League, his manager has shown his faith in the lanky striker by giving him Shearer’s old number 9 shirt this season. No pressure then!