Re: ||English Championship 30494||
Phase 2 is complete..
Jose Luis Gaya is widely considered as one of Spain's hottest property. Following the sale of Juan Bernat to Bayern Munich last summer, Gaya, at just 19 years of age, commanded the position for himself. With rumours of a bid from Real Madrid circling, Valencia quickly tied him down to a new contract. 6 assists and 2 goals in 35 appearances is good going for someone in their debut season at the top level
One of the surprise names in Joachim Low's Germany World Cup winning squad was defensive midfielder Christoph Kramer. Making his first appearance in the final against Argentina, a clash with Ezequiel Garay saw him concussed and he had to be substituted after just half an hour. But in those 30 minutes, he impressed enough for scouts from Arsenal and Manchester City to be watching him on his two season loan from Bayer Leverkusen to Borussia Monchengladbach.
A major part of PSV's title winning side, Georginio Wijnaldum has been on the radar of many clubs for a few years now, but it is this season that the 24 year old has really made a name for himself. Whilst most scouts may have been watching winger Memphis Depay, few would have missed the performances of the attacking midfielder. With an impressive 17 goals this season from 43 games, the international looks set to be ready for the next stage of his career.
One of the brightest young talents in France was snapped up for just over £3m in January 2013 as Lille secured the services of right winger Florian Thauvin. It says a lot that just 9 months later, Marseille quadrupled that fee to buy him for £12.9m. Suddenly, a 20 year old playing for SC Bastia has found himself plying his trade at one of the biggest clubs in France. Yet to break into the senior international side, the Frenchman has proved value for money with 5 goals and 7 assists in 36 appearances for the French giants.
After a stuttering start to his career in France, Brahimi found himself playing for Granada, before being picked up by Portugese heavywieghts FC Porto. for just under £6m, that deal now looks to be a massive coup as the Algerian's passing and decision making has led to rumours of a £35m bid from Manchester City. 13 goals and 10 assists in 40 appearances back up the hype around the left winger. However, the deal to bring him to Stoke is now seen as one of the biggest coups of year.
22 year old left winger Heung-Min Son has steadily been making a name for himself in the Bundesliga over the past few seasons. The Korean is regarded as one of the most valuable players in the U21 category, and Liverpool's growing interest is a symbol of his burgeoning reputation. He has an eye for goals with 17 in 40 a more than respectable tally for a wide man
28 year old Colombian Jackson Martinez has been in sensational form this season for Portugese giants FC Porto, scoring 31 goals in 40 appearances. Now being linked with massive clubs all over Europe, this summer was set to see a race for the hitman's signature before Stoke stole a march on the rest and sealed his signature
Following team mate Nicolas Otamendi to The Britannia Stadium was 21 year old striker Paco Alcacer who has impressed many with his performances for Valencia this season. The Spanish international notched 13 goals in his 34 appearanes so far this season, only Dani Parejo has scored more for Valencia in the league.
This sees Stoke'a squad take on a drastically different look from recent weeks
Darmian - Otamendi - Evans - Kurzawa
Bellarabi - Brahimi
Martinez - Lacazette
Can - Shawcross - Rugani - Gaya
Thauvin - Son
Benteke - Alcacer