5 Premier League Players Who Need to Improve Before the World Cup

The new Premier League season is just a few weeks away. As with every preseason, this summer has seen lots of players posting videos and photos on social media of intense training workouts. It’s mostly pr-driven, of course, but you can be sure that many of those Premier League stars will view the new season as a chance for a fresh start.

But this season is set to be an exceptional one since the FIFA World Cup is smack bang in the middle of it. Due to the extreme heat in the Qatari summer, the only option for hosting the finals would be in the winter, and thus, we will have a World Cup from November to mid-December.

For many players, there is an opportunity to get their international careers back on track or to catch the notice of managers selecting players for the World Cup. But some very talented players must raise their game in the coming months, lest their World Cup dreams are scrapped.

Below we have picked out five Premier League talents who will need to get off to a flying start when the new season kicks off in August:

Marcus Rashford – Manchester United and England

Can anyone name a footballer whose stock has fallen as dramatically as Rashford’s in the last year? Of course, due to his charitable activities, Rashford is worshipped off the pitch, but he had a torrid time for United last season. His club career is at an important juncture, and his international career looks to be falling off a cliff. Rashford is in danger of missing out on the England squad as things stand, and he must rebuild his club performances to return to Gareth Southgate’s plans. Rashford is no longer the youngster of the United squad. It’s time to turn potential into a permanent class.

Gabriel Jesus – Arsenal and Brazil

Jesus is an interesting case study, as he has not been cited as a player out of form. However, his time was clearly up at Man City with the arrival of Erling Haaland to the Etihad. Something makes sense about the Brazilian going to Arsenal, though, and it might be that London is a better fit for Jesus than Manchester. The problem, however, is the ridiculous strength of the Brazil squad. The online betting markets for the World Cup show that Brazil is the favorite to win for the sixth time, and that’s partly down to its incredible amount of attacking talent. Jesus has been a mainstay for years, but Neymar, Antony, Vinicius Jnr, Richarlison, Raphina, and several others will want their place. Jesus needs everything to go to plan at Arsenal.

Jack Grealish – Manchester City and England

If he is fit, it will be almost certain that Jack Grealish will go to Qatar with England. However, the £100-million-man will want to be central to Gareth Southgate’s strategy, and the only way he can do that is by proving he is indispensable to Man City. That’s easier said than done. Grealish was not terrible in his first season at City, but he certainly did not look like the player who cost that huge amount of money to sign for Aston Villa. As with Rashford, this season seems pivotal to the career of Grealish. If he gets it right, he can lead England to a serious charge at the World Cup.

Jack Grealish

Bruno Fernandes – Manchester United and Portugal

If you follow football, then you’ll know that we could probably make an entire list of Man United players who need to improve dramatically in the coming months. Fernandes’ form is of more interest than others. There is a consensus among some fans that Fernandes was tired last season. He has made 126 appearances for the Red Devils already, despite only joining in February 2020. That’s a lot of minutes on the pitch, so it’s little wonder that his form has dipped considerably. With a good rest this summer and proper preseason preparation, the brilliant Portuguese midfielder can kickstart United’s season and reinsert himself into Portugal’s plans for the World Cup.

Timo Werner – Chelsea and Germany

When Germany suffered one of the most embarrassing defeats in the history of international football – a 2-1 loss to North Macedonia – was Timo Werner singled out for criticism after the Chelsea forward spurred numerous chances. While he has popped up with a good performance here and there for Chelsea, his time at the club has been patchy. With Chelsea likely to make some big signings in the coming weeks, Werner could see his chances limited by Thomas Tuchel. That could be detrimental to his World Cup hopes. He needs to show his undoubted talent.

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