The Premier League has been such an unpredictable league over the past few years that one is almost compelled to expect the unexpected with each passing season. It's turned out to be a league where a team who is crowned champion in one season might struggle to make the top half the next season. It's also a league where a player who might've been disappointing or unknown a previous season becomes a worldwide star because of their terrific performances in some other season. Similarly, there were quite a few breakout stars in the Premier League last season who helped their sides attain a lot of success and lit up the league with their sparkling performances.
But those breakout stars haven't really been able to replicate their impressive form this season, with some of them failing to live up to their expectations. A few star strikers have failed to score goals like they're expected to and have been extremely underwhelming in front of goal. Similarly, there have been a few midfielders who have also struggled to impose themselves in the center of the park and create chances for their stars. A few goalkeepers, who single-handedly saved their teams from losses last season, are also performing poorly this time and letting in too many easy goals for their liking.
Despite their buoyant performances last season, these Premier League players have been extremely sub-par so far this season and haven't been able to perform to the level they're expected to. So let's look at 7 Premier League strikers, goalkeepers, and midfielders who will underperform for their clubs this season.
21 Goalkeeper - Nick Pope
Nick Pope was one of the saving graces for Burnley in their last line of defense, with his amazing goal-keeping ability helping them earn many important points in their historic season in the Premier League. His amazing shot-stopping and all-around ability helped him earn 11 clean-sheets last season when he didn't let the absence of captain Tom Heaton be felt, but things could get tricky for him this time out. But Pope's season has started horribly, as he's out with an injury and with new signing Joe Hart making the goalkeeping position his own, it'll be extremely difficult for Pope to get back into the starting lineup and he could underperform badly trying to outdo his goalkeeping rival after returning.
20 Midfielder - Wilfried Zaha
Wilfried Zaha had the most prolific season in his Premier League career last time out for Crystal Palace, whom he helped avoid relegation with some stunning performances throughout the season. The electric winger scored 9 goals for Palace and was an absolute menace for any opposition because of his movement and trickery, which managed to fool many. But Zaha had proved to be a frustrating figure in the past and has lacked consistency at the top, which might haunt him this season as well. Despite scoring few goals so far this season, recurring injuries could be Zaha's bane and the overwhelming pressure on his shoulders could soon trigger him to underperform for Palace.
19 Striker - Troy Deeney
Troy Deeney has led Watford valiantly in the Premier League through the years and has played a big part in their stay in England's top flight over the years. But last season, Deeney started to show regression in his game and couldn't manage to play to his best. He only scored 5 goals in the season and missed many big chances which one would expect him to easily score. Being Watford's captain, Deeney is still getting chances to lead the line for Watford and scored one goal in three PL appearances so far. But he doesn't look that lethal striker anymore, with his age slowing him down and if he performs at a lackluster level for Watford, he might be reduced to the bench soon enough.
18 Goalkeeper - Jordan Pickford
Jordan Pickford had a superb campaign with England in the World Cup, where he put in some amazing performances and made some stunning saves to help the Three Lions make it into the semi-finals. Pickford had a decent season with Everton in the Premier League, where he did earn 10 clean-sheets but wasn't too convincing in other matches. But he's been unable to showcase that form for the Toffies and is yet to keep a clean sheet in the Premier League this season. Pickford has let in six goals in four games for Everton and conceded pretty cheaply at times. He hasn't been able to replicate his World Cup form for Everton and the weight on his shoulders is making Pickford underperform at club level.
17 Midfielder - Fred
Fred was Manchester United's "star signing" of the summer transfer window and while he's a relatively unknown player, his impressive work in the Uefa Champions League last season and in the league for Shakhtar Donetsk made him a commendable player. Fred has also caught up with United's game pretty quickly and is being started every game to showcase his trickery. But the Brazilian hasn't really been that effected for United, being unable to create for them and missing some chances of his own in their poor start to the season. Fred has actually looked poor at moments for United and underperformed badly for them so far, as he'll need to pick up form to stay in the Red Devils starting line-up throughout the season.
16 Striker - Alvaro Morata
Alvaro Morata started his Chelsea career with a bang, scoring many goals in the first few months before everything started to crumble for the Spanish striker. Morata's form dipped in around December, after which he was isolated from the team. But Morata has been able to earn the trust of new coach Mauricio Sarri and started every game for Chelsea so far in the league this season. Despite starting every game, Morata has still been an isolated figure who is frustrating to watch for the fans. Morata has only scored a single goal so far and looks to be lacking that strikers' instinct in front of goal, with the added pressure on him to score making him constantly underperform for the Blues.
15 Goalkeeper - Petr Cech
Petr Cech has been able to retain his spot as the starting goalkeeper of Arsenal despite new coach Unai Emery bringing in a new keeper in Bernd Leno. Cech's experience and reliability in front of the posts has given him the nod ahead of Leno, but he hasn't really proved himself worthy to be picked. Cech has given some poor performances so far this season and was especially bad in the defeat to Chelsea. He's made some bad mistakes which has cost Arsenal and looks a shaky figure in between the posts. Cech is under pressure to perform or be replaced by Leno and it seems that pressure is resulting in him underperforming for the Gunners.
14 Midfielder - Dele Alli
Dele Alli has been an important clog in Tottenham Hotspur's electric attacking line over the past few seasons and has linked amazingly with Harry Kane and co to play some stunning football for Spurs. But after breaking through with Spurs a few years ago, Alli's form dipped a bit last season mostly due to injuries keeping him out. Alli hasn't really gotten off to a great start after a decent World Cup campaign with England and has only scored a single goal so far for Spurs. He's actually been poor in front of goal at times and missed some sitters in the last few matches. Alli's overconfidence in the attack seems to be costing him and made him underperform this season for Spurs.
13 Striker - Alexandre Lacazette
Alexandre Lacazette didn't really have a bad season at Arsenal at all last year and managed to score a respectable 14 goals in the Premier League in his debut season. But his inconsistency and frustrating nature made Arsenal sign Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in January, after which it has been extremely difficult for Lacazette get playing time as a striker. Lacazette has already been benched by Aubameyang and seems to be under heavy pressure to perform, unless which he won't be starting for the Gunners. The French striker is yet to score a single goal for Arsenal in the league and looks sub-par in front of goal. It seems the pressure is taking a toll on him and making Lacazette underperform as a result.
12 Goalkeeper - David De Gea
David de Gea was arguably the best goalkeeper in the world last season after he saved Manchester United from doom on numerous occasions with his fantastic work in between the posts. But it seems like a poor World Cup campaign has taken a toll on the Spaniard and De Gea doesn't look as sharp and concentrated he was for the Red Devils last season. He's yet to keep a clean sheet and was poor in United's humiliating 3-0 losses to Tottenham Hotspur and Brighton. It seems like the burden of expectations has finally caught up with De Gea, who is underperforming because of the intense pressure on his shoulders.
11 Midfielder - Riyad Mahrez
Riyad Mahrez achieved the dream of his life when he sealed a big-money move to reigning Premier League champions Manchester City in the summer. While Mahrez has earned the move to a big club, he needs to prove himself to thrive at one, which he hasn't managed to do so far. Mahrez has been very underwhelming for City and is yet to score a goal or assist a goal for the Citizens this season. It seems like Mahrez is trying a bit too much at times to impress City fans and failing as a result and if he continues to retain this attitude, he'll keep on underperforming for the Champions throughout the remainder of the season.
10 Striker - Christian Benteke
Christian Benteke has really regressed over the past few seasons and who was once an emphatic striker in the box has now been reduced to a player heavily mocked by rival fans. Benteke hasn't really helped his own reputation with some poor displays for Crystal Palace over the years and it doesn't look like things will improve for him this season. Benteke is yet to score a goal in four Premier League appearances this season and has given some bad performances already. He's already missed many easy chances and gotten bullied by defenders and it seems Benteke's underperforming outings could frustrate Crystal Palace fans, even more, this season.
9 Goalkeeper - Ben Hamer
Huddersfield Town's newest recruit in the goalkeeping position hasn't really been the most fortuitous for them, as Ben Hamer hasn't been able to perform to the standards of the Premier League. Hamer somehow managed to oust the reliable Jonas Lossl from the starting lineup but played poorly against the likes of Chelsea and Manchester City in Huddersfield's first few matches in the league. Hamer conceded 9 goals in two matches against them and was absolutely horrible in them, with two of the goals coming directly from his own mistakes. Hamer already looks a shaky customer for Huddersfield, as it seems like the pressure of the league is making him underperform badly for the Terriers.
8 Midfielder - Cesc Fabregas
Cesc Fabregas had a season to forget for Chelsea last time out, where he scored 2 goals and assist 4 in a forgettable season for him. Fabregas was also removed from the starting XI because of his poor performances, but he'll hope to find a new life under new coach Maurizio Sarri. Fabregas' form might improve under the new Italian manager, but he's struggled to break through to the starting lineup so far. Fabregas is in danger of falling horribly down the peck at Chelsea with Jorginho, Kovacic, and Kante making the midfield their own. Fabregas is currently out injured, but if he underperforms with the pressure on his shoulders, he probably will have to do with a place on the bench.
7 Striker - Charlie Austin
Charlie Austin has been one of the Premier League's prominent goal-scorers in recent season and ever since making a big impact with QPR a few seasons, ago he's been blazing the EPL with some stunning goals over the years. While Austin had a pretty decent season with Southampton last season and scored 7 goals for them in the PL, he didn't look that clinical striker he was years ago. Austin's dangerous finishing ability seems to have regressed and he's not looking that good this season either. Austin is yet to score a goal for the Saints in the 4 appearances he made for them, and it seems the pressure from new partner Danny Ings is making him underperform badly this season.
6 Goalkeeper - Lukasz Fabianski
While Lukasz Fabianski couldn't save Swansea City from the doom of relegation, he was definitely the brightest aspect of their season and impressed many with his amazing goalkeeping skills last season. Fabianski was absolute rock-solid in between the posts and despite having a poor defense, he managed to keep 9 clean sheets in the season! Despite his heroics last season, Fabianski hasn't managed to save West Ham from doom so far this season and is performing poorly himself. Fabianski is yet to keep a clean-sheet for West Ham and has already conceded 10 goals in four games. He's made quite a few mistakes leading to goals, as it seems Fabianski is unable to handle the pressure anymore and is underperforming as a result.
5 Midfielder - Granit Xhaka
Granit Xhaka has been a topsy-turvy figure for Arsenal over the past few seasons, with his frustrating performances often landing the Gunners into a lot of trouble. Xhaka was pretty disappointing for the Gunners last season and despite being brilliant on a few occasions, his over-aggressiveness and clumsiness in midfield often cost his side. Xhaka will not have it easier at all this season, where Arsenal are packed with a more stacked midfield. He already looks quite shaky in the center of the park for the Gunners and is making young Matteo Guendouzi's life any easier. Xhaka is constantly turning off in midfield and making amateurish mistakes, which has cost Arsenal to lose the midfield battle and Xhaka's underperforming nature continues frustrating the Gunners.
4 Striker - Cenk Tosun
Cenk Tosun was signed in January to solve Everton's goal-scoring problems and repaid their faith pretty well by scoring five goals in the 14 appearances he made for them. Tosun has had a decent career at Everton so far, but things could get much more difficult for him in his first full season in the Premier League. Tosun's threat has been identified by other clubs and has made things really difficult for him so far this season. While the likes of Richarlison and Theo Walcott are performing superbly for Everton, Tosun has been underwhelming and yet to score a single goal. Tosun doesn't look a threat in front of goal anymore and seems to be underperforming badly in the Premier League this season.
3 Goalkeeper - Kasper Schmeichel
Kasper Schmeichel amazed everyone with his heroics at the World Cup, with his performance against Croatia in the knockout stages proving just how much of a talented goalkeeper he really is. Schmeichel had a decent season with Leicester last time out, gaining 9 clean sheets in the Premier League with them, but it was only at an international level that he began to thrive. But because of his amazing World Cup showing, Schmeichel has added pressure on his shoulders, something which has shown on his game this season. Schmeichel has only managed one clean-sheet so far this season and doesn't look as convincing as he was last season, as he's slightly underperformed this season because of the intense pressure on him.
2 Midfielder - Jack Wilshere
Jack Wilshere decided to move on from Arsenal earlier in the summer and after rampant speculation, he decided to join London rivals West Ham United, who looked a promising project under new coach Mauricio Pellegrini. But West Ham have gotten off to a horrible start this season, losing all of their four matches so far in humiliating fashion. Wilshere has started the games but looks a lost figure in midfield who can't inspire his new team at all. He doesn't seem that energetic figure he once was and is struggling to cope up with the intensity of the games. Wilshere's underperforming nature isn't helping his reputation at all and is affecting his team's performances on the pitch as well.
1 Striker - Gabriel Jesus
Gabriel Jesus has proven to be a really good signing for Manchester City and continued his impressive goal-scoring run with the club last season when he scored 13 goals in their historic campaign in the Premier League. But Jesus' injury issues and lack of consistency has made him a frustrating figure to watch lately, with his poor performance for Brazil in the World Cup- where he failed to score a single goal- proving his recent regression. Jesus has been quite underwhelming so far for City this season, only scoring 1 goal, while partner Aguero has already scored around 3. Jesus seems to be underperforming due to the pressure on him to outperform Aguero, something he just can't seem to do.