Three Championship stars who could be future Premier League regulars
Although a large number of Premier League clubs tend to do the majority of their shopping abroad, they may also occasionally dip into the second tier. The Championship is a hugely competitive and entertaining division and it regularly nurtures and produces future top flight stars. Many players have been plucked from the division in recent seasons and there are a number of standout stars who have done more than enough to make the step up.
There is a still a sizeable gulf between the two levels, however, last season, all three of the promoted sides managed to avoid relegation for the first time since the 2017-18 campaign. The 2023-24 Premier League odds have been priced up by the majority of UK betting sites with promoted duo Luton and Sheffield United widely expected to struggle, however, there’s a good chance that the Hatters and the Blades may look towards the second tier when undertaking their summer splurge.
We’ve picked out three potential Premier League prospects.
Gus Hamer – Coventry
Although his team-mate Viktor Gyokeres has received the majority of the plaudits this season, Brazil- born Dutch midfielder Gus Hamer has been the driving force behind Coventry’s unexpected play-off campaign. The combative midfielder’s contract expires next summer and is likely to be on the move this summer with plenty of potential suitors waiting in line.
Hamer has improved his discipline over the course of the season and with nine goals and ten assists across the course of the campaign, he’s been one of the standout players in the top half of the Championship.
He played 74 key passes last season and only six players made more passes into the final third. With an eye for goal, Hamer has transformed into the all-round midfield package and his winner against Middlesbrough in the play-off semi-finals is likely to have bumped up his price tag.
Dara O’Shea – West Brom
Although Dara O’Shea’s name hasn’t necessarily been linked with a Premier League outfit yet, the Irishman has seemingly improved with each passing season. He’s been backed by Baggies boss Carlos Corberan to return to the top flight in the near future and despite missing the final month of the campaign through injury, the 24-year international enjoyed a successful season at the Hawthorns.
Prior to his injury, which was picked up on international duty, he hadn’t missed a single minute of Championship action and had captained the side on multiple occasions.
He made 67 interceptions last season and averaged 3.6 clearances per match. Although Baggies desperately want to keep the defender on their books, the club’s financial issues may potentially result in some unwanted summer sales.
Joe Rankin-Costello – Blackburn
Joe Rankin-Costello’s season arc at Ewood Park is quite incredible. He began the season as back-up right-back to new signing Callum Brittain and almost left on loan in August. Despite this, the 23-year old produced an incredible turnaround during the second half of the campaign and finished as the runner-up in the end of season player of the year awards.
Defensively, he’s solid enough with an average of 1.8 tackles per match and he’s also proven adept at venturing forward. He’s averaged 1.5 shots per game and was very progressive when carrying the ball into the opposition half.
Prior to December 17 th, JCR had played just a single Championship match and having ended the season with a goal and an assist against Millwall, he has certainly put himself in the shop window. He looks set to sign a new contract with Blackburn this summer, however, it wouldn’t be a surprise if lower-end Premier League clubs are sniffing around this hot prospect.