It was a strange summer in the transfer market as far as spending goes with newly-promoted Fulham surprisingly splashing more cash on transfers than Manchester City.
The west London club forked out on the likes of Jean-Michael Seri and Alfie Mawson, while the Premier League champions only made one significant signing, in comparison, with Riyad Mahrez arriving at the Etihad to give Pep Guardiola another option in attack.
Fulham, likewise, brought in Andre Schurrle on a two-year loan deal from Borussia Dortmund to bolster their own forward line.
How, though, do the two wingers compare?
Schurrle arrived at Craven Cottage having had a slight fall from grace. The 27-year-old had gone from setting up the 2014 World Cup-winning goal to finding himself on the periphery of a Borussia Dortmund squad that has probably been at its weakest since the club’s rise in the Bundesliga under Jurgen Klopp.
Nevertheless, Fulham’s capture of Schurrle is still quite a coup; the Germany international is a player of immense quality who is capable of bringing goals to Slavisa Jokanovic’s side.
He has already scored two Premier League goals in five appearances and shown — much like during his spell at Fulham’s west London rivals Chelsea — that he is not afraid to try and test the goalkeeper from anywhere on the pitch.
The former Chelsea man is a fantastic striker of the ball, capable of generating an incredible amount of shot power, while he can also be dangerous in and around the penalty area.
Schurrle has an abundance of pace he can use to breeze past defenders and has the versatility to play across all of the positions in the forward line including up front.
Alongside Aleksandar Mitrovic, who has also managed to find the back of the net on more than one occasion so far this season, Schurrle can provide Jokanovic with the sort of firepower in attack that will help Fulham to retain their Premier League status come the end of the campaign.
TT Grade: A-
Having missed out on Alexis Sanchez to rivals Manchester United, Manchester City turned their attention to Riyad Mahrez, eventually landing him this summer after having their initial approaches back in January rebuffed by Leicester City (via Reuters).
On his day, there are few better than Mahrez in the Premier League, making his arrival at the Etihad one that had many rival supporters fearing for their team’s title chances.
However, Mahrez could yet struggle to deliver the sort of impact that has been expected of him.
It is, of course, still early days, but it is difficult to see how Mahrez cements a spot in Guardiola’s starting XI.
Given how he has performed since Guardiola’s arrival at the Etihad, Raheem Sterling is an automatic name on the team-sheet. And, despite his recent troubles, Leroy Sane is a player the former Bayern Munich and Barcelona boss has looked heavily towards during his tenure at the club.
With Guardiola’s tendency to rotate his team quite often, though, opportunities will most definitely come for Mahrez. But, in this moment of time, the Algerian winger has done very little at the Premier League champions.
TT Grade: C+
In a straight shootout of ability, there is only one winner and it does not even come close.
Technically, Mahrez has so much more to his game than Schurrle. Mahrez is both a better dribbler and passer and while Schurrle can get more behind his shot, the side-foot technique the ex-Leicester City player goes with produces better results in terms of shooting accuracy.
That being said, Mahrez cannot match Schurrle’s contribution to the season thus far, and that could be a recurring theme with game time possibly being limited at the Etihad for the 27-year-old.