Hull City could give four summer signings their debuts against West Ham United on Monday evening.
Hull City made plenty of headlines on transfer deadline day, bringing in players who were anything but panic-buys.
Tigers boss Steve Bruce signed players who considerably improved his side, giving them more midfield steel and a fine array of attacking talent.
Mohamed Diame, Abel Hernandez, Hatem Ben Arfa and Gaston Ramirez all arrived at the KC Stadium, the latter two on loan, and all are in line to make their debut on Monday when Hull face West Ham United. So which of their likely debutants could make the most impact, both against the Hammers and over the season as a whole?
It is fair to say Gaston Ramirez’s time at Southampton has been mixed. The attacking midfielder made 50 appearances for the Saints prior to his loan move, scoring eight goals and setting up a further seven in that time.
But you sense this is his chance to show what he can really do on a consistent basis and Bruce will know that. The Uruguayan has the versatility to succeed in the Premier League, and over a whole season he could be one of Hull’s most important players. However he could take time to settle and thus may not make the difference against West Ham.
Hatem Ben Arfa
The Frenchman is the player most are tipping to be the star of Hull’s season. A player with bags of ability, he had lost his way at Newcastle United and one senses that Bruce is going to coax the best out of the 27-year-old.
Expect him to start as he means to go on against West Ham and a goal on his competitive debut is not beyond the realms of possibility. By the end of the campaign, he has the talent to be crowned the Tigers’ Player of the Season.
The striker is another who will want to get on the score-sheet as soon as possible. Having recovered from a bad injury Hernandez will love being back on the field and a fresh start in England could be exactly what he needs.
Bruce will have signed him knowing he has the potential to net 15-plus league goals a season, and what better place to start than on his home debut?
The midfielder risked the wrath of his former Hammers fans when he revealed he should have left Upton Park long ago.
A central midfielder with tenacity and talent in equal measure, Diame could make the difference against his former club, before going on to have an outstanding season for Hull. He may be the least exciting player to arrive at the KC Stadium this summer, but he could be the most important.