Thibaut Courtois: Players yet to prove their worth

Courtoise has struggled since joining Real Madrid

1- Thibaut Courtois: World Cup Golden Glove winner Courtois arrived at the Santiago Bernabeu for £35m plus a season long loan that saw Mateo Kovacic join Chelsea.

In just six months at Real Madrid, Courtois has already conceded three or more goals on five occasions. Scant wonder the record Spanish and European champions are tied for fifth in Liga Santander and outsiders to win back the Champions League trophy they’ve lifted in four out of the last five years.

2- Stephane Leichtsteiner: Though Swiss skipper Leichtsteiner arrived at Arsenal on a free transfer from Juventus, he has complicated life for manager Unai Emery  as his game is not suited to the English Premier League.

Leichtsteiner may have won six Scudettos with Juventus but as Arsenal’s setback at Brighton illustrated, he is too slow and too old to play as a wing-back, yet he isn’t strong enough to thrive at centre-back.

3- Thilo Kehrer: German international Kehrer has not progressed an inch since making a £33m move from Schalke to Paris Saint Germain.

Whereas he was indispensable to Domenico Todesco’s Ruhr river side, at PSG he has been reduced to a bit part role. Kehrer is third choice behind Thomas Mounier and Daniel Alves at Right Back and rarely gets a look in at centre half.

4- Naby Keita: Guinean powerhouse Keita was the Bundesliga’s standout midfielder for two seasons before Liverpool forked out £52 to get him across the English Channel.

A combination of injuries and poor form has reduced Keita to sporadic cameos. Given the imperious displays from Georgina Wijnaldum, Fabinho, James Milner and Jordan Henderson, it’s hard to see Keita thriving.

5- Aleksandr Golovin: It seems this Russian star took the wrong turn when he rejected some of Europe’s leading clubs in favour of beleaguered French outfit Monaco.

A mixture of injuries, suspension and poor form means Golovin has only featured nine times for the 2017 Ligue One champions. Perhaps Cesc Fabregas’ imminent arrival will get the best out of him.

6- Fred: When Manchester United recruited Fred from Shakhtar Donetsk for £50m, they thought they had found a heir apparent to Roy Keane and Paul Scholes.

A series of underwhelming performances from the Brazilian World Cup midfielder contributed to the early departure of manager Jose Mourinho.

7- Malcolm: Brazil winger Malcolm was a subject of a legal wrangle when he signed for Barcelona, after verbally agreed to sign for AS Roma.

However, after failing to force his way into Blagruana’s first XI, the former Girondin Bordeaux winger has been reduced to sporadic appearances in Copa Del Rey. A loan move could be in the offing.

8- Arturo Vidal: Chile Copa America winner Arturo Vidal has failed to live up to his high billing at Nou Camp.

In fact, Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde has failed to justify his decision to recruit Vidal and send Paulinho on loan to Guangzhou Evergrande. Vidal is only beginning to edge Arthur Melo out of Barça’s starting eleven IX.

9- Justin Kluivert: This son of Dutch legend Patrick Kluivert has yet to justify his big money move from Ajax Amsterdam to AS Roma.

Kluivert Jr is currently playing fifth fiddle to Genghiz Under, Stephane El Sharawy, Patrick Schick and Eden Dzeko. This is another player who could benefit from a spell away from Stadio Olympico.

10- Diego Costa: I am including former Chelsea hard man Costa because he has been a shambles since completing a protracted £58m move to the Wanda Metropolitano.

A paltry four goals is a return that must be making it impossible for Costa to look manager Diego Simeone straight in the eye.

11- Thomas Lemar: Football punditry was right to question the £90m Atletico Madrid splashed to sign Lemar from Monaco.

While not a spectacular flop, this French international knows that two goals six months down the road are a paltry return.



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