Premier League: Five signings that could surprise

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So far this summer the rumour-mill has been flooded with speculation, particularly over the future of Gareth Bale, Wayne Rooney and Luis Suarez.

As for big transfers actually having happened – well, it hasn’t been the most memorable summer.

Tottenham have had a few big names arrive with the likes of Roberto Soldado from Valencia and Paulinho from Corinthians in Brazil.

Manchester City have shown their money power in signing Fernandinho from Shakhtar Donetsk, Alvaro Negredo and Jesus Navas from Sevilla, while also stealing Stevan Jovetic from under Arsenal’s nose.

Norwich has also done extremely well to lure Dutch striker Ricky van Wolfswinkel away from Sporting Lisbon.

But it’s not always the big blockbuster signings that come in and take they Premier League by storm (we all remember a certain Andriy Shevchenko didn’t do much at Chelsea). Last season the likes of Michu and Christian Benteke were low-key signings, but by the end of the season everyone remembered their names.

Here we’ll have a look a five signings that didn’t make big headlines when they arrived, but way well become hidden gems by the end of the season.

Iago Aspas: Celta Vigo to Liverpool

The versatile Spaniard was brought in to the Premier League following seven years in Spain. Iago Aspas was pivotal in Celta Vigo’s promotion back into La Liga having finished top scorer in the Segunda Division in the 2011/12 season.

Last season in the La Liga his 12 goals and seven assists in 34 appearances helped to keep his club out of the relegation zone and remain in the top division for this season.

The 25-year-old can play either through the middle or out wide, which would make him fit perfectly into a front three with Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez.

He already has an assist in the Premier League having helped set up Daniel Sturridge in Liverpool’s opening win against Stoke.

Antonio Luna: Sevilla to Aston Villa

The 22-year-old left back is part of a influx of Spanish players arriving into the Premier League in recent years.

Luna spent the second half of last season on loan to the relegated Mallorca, not being favoured by Sevilla to fill the position at left back.

Paul Lambert has taken a chance on him as he tries to rebuild his Aston Villa side that struggled last season. So far his gamble seems to have paid off with Luna scoring in Villa’s 3-1 win away to Arsenal.

The left-back tucked away a finish with the composure of a striker. So we may well see his name on the score-sheet a few times through the season.

Jozy Altidore: AZ Alkmaar to Sunderland

The United States international striker may only be 23 years old, but he is already a bit of a journeyman having played in US, Spain, England, Turkey and the Netherlands.

His first spell in England with Hull wasn’t a time he’ll recall with fond memories having only scored one goal in 28 Premier League appearances, so the big man may be back with a vengeance this time.

However, he thrived in his two seasons playing for AZ ending his spell in the Eredivsie with 39 goals in 67 appearances.

Maybe Paulo Di Canio has signed him at the best possible point in his career to help Sunderland finish further up the table this season.

Pablo Osvaldo: Roma to Southampton

The Saints may just have done one of the best pieces of business in the transfer season so far in bagging the Argentina-born Italy international.

The 27-year-old striker had, like Altidore, been a bit of a journeyman the majority of his career. It wasn’t until his second season in La Liga with Espanyol where he scored 13 goals in 24 league games that people took note of him.

Roma came calling and he arrived back in Serie A refreshed, confident and raring to go. He finished his two seasons in the Italian league with an impressive 27 goals in 55 league appearances.

No wonder Southampton paid £13m to acquire his services. If they get him on form we could definitely be seeing his name high up on the top scorers chart come the end of the season.

Etienne Capoue: Toulouse to Tottenham Hotspur

This man’s arrival to the north London club has been overshadowed by the arrival of Paulinho, Roberto Soldado and the Gareth Bale transfer saga.

The defensive midfielder, who can also play at centre-back if need be, has had a solid career at Toulouse, featuring in the Ligue 1’s team of the year for 2012. And coming to a side like Tottenham he will only improve.

With Spurs already having a host of options in the middle of the park with Lewis Holtby impressing last season along with Mousa Dembele and Gylfi Siggurdson – while also welcoming new signings Paulinho and Chadli into the mix.

But if given the chance, Capoue could end up being a rock in centre of midfield.

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Jozy Altidore
Premier League

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