The Premier League is full of world class stars, with the likes of Ozil, Suarez and Aguero lighting up the grounds week in, week out. However due to the flair and flash of these superstars there are often many highly skilled players that are overlooked by pundits and fans alike. Here I will identify just five of these players who have slipped under the radar. In no particular order, here they are:
Curtis Davies (Hull City):
The two million pound defender has made an instant impact at Hull, quickly forming a formidable partnership with James Chester and helping the club to a total of 10 clean sheets this season. He has been a rock at the back and as a captain is marshalling his defence with confidence and authority. He looks comfortable on the ball and is not afraid to play his way out of trouble. Steve Bruce’s investment is already looking like a steal, and Davies is surely showing the kind of form to make Hodgson to consider his selection at the World Cup.
Claudio Yacob (West Brom):
The Argentine is a deep lying midfielder who acts as a platform to build attacks from. He does the simple things well, carrying the ball up the pitch and playing simple passes into more creative players like Sessegnon and Amalfitano. If new Baggies boss Pepe Mel is to have success it will have been heavily reliant on Yacob’s consistent performances. He is an industrious tough tackling midfielder who has formed a strong partnership alongside Mulumbu in West Brom’s midfield to offer good cover for his teams defence and also a link from defence to the attack.
Wilfried Bony (Swansea):
Wilfried Bony is Swansea’s record transfer signing, coming from Vitesse for a fee of £12 million after a fantastic return in the 2012-13 where he scored 31 goals in 30 games. The Ivorian has already bagged himself 15 goals in all competitions this season and is the perfect player to lead the line for the swans. He is athletic and strong, making him a massive handful for defenders across the Premier League. He is very dangerous from all positions, with his head or with his feet, and also has a wide array of skills at his disposal – making him a threat to all teams.
Joel Ward (Crystal Palace):
Joel Ward has been one of the Palace’s best players, alongside Miles Jedinak, since they were promoted to the Premier League. He started off the season well and has still improved significantly under the leadership of Tony Pulis. He is a strong young defender who can offer Crystal Palace a solid out ball on the right. He is also physical enough to be a threat at corners and free-kicks. Don’t be surprised if a bigger team makes a bid in the summer if Palace go down, because he has all the attributes to be a high-quality right back in the future.
Jordan Henderson (Liverpool):
Henderson is probably one of the most improved players this season. In his first couple of years he was often harshly criticised due to his large price tag and this stunted his development. However this season he has really proven to be a key figure of a Liverpool side that currently occupies a champions league place. One of his main strengths is his athleticism and his ability to get all over the pitch. This makes him vital for Rodgers desired high pressing game. A criticism often thrown his way is that he has a lack of creative talent and attacking instinct, and whilst his finishing still needs some work, he has vastly improved his statistics – having notched up two goals and six assists this altogether season.
Some honourable mentions include:
Miles Jedinak, Morgan Schniederlin, Mathieu Debuchy, Davide Santon, Fabian Delph