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Transfer Battle: Jean-Michael Seri vs Abdoulaye Doucoure

Fulham were one of the busier teams in the summer transfer window as they looked to shape a squad capable of staying in the Premier League following their promotion from the Championship last season.

The west London club forked out to make Aleksandar Mitrovic’s temporary move a permanent one, while they were also able to bring in Germany international Andre Schurrle from Borussia Dortmund on a two-year loan deal.

The pair have started the new campaign well and will continue to take all of the plaudits if they can keep up their goal-scoring exploits.

However, as well as Mitrovic and Schurrle, Jean-Michael Seri has also been impressive in Fulham’s opening five Premier League fixtures.

The Ivorian midfielder joined for big money from Nice back in July and will do battle with Abdoulaye Doucoure — another talented midfield man — on Saturday when Fulham take on Watford at Craven Cottage.

So how do the two midfield men match-up?

Jean-Michael Seri

Prior to joining Fulham, Seri had been linked with the likes of Chelsea, Arsenal and Barcelona (via Sky Sports).

And in these opening games, the 27-year-old has shown that he would have slotted nicely into any of the above teams.

Their loss is Fulham’s gain, of course, with the midfielder having brought much technical quality to Slavisa Jokanovic’s side.

Seri has both the vision and passing to create chances from anywhere on the pitch and, when he is not crafting out opportunities for his team-mates, he can often be seen testing the opposition goalkeeper from long distance with his deadly long-shot ability.

TT Grade: A

Doucoure has quickly become a fan favourite at Vicarage Road since joining Watford in the summer of 2016, and it is not hard to see why.

The 25-year-old is a driving force from midfield, often bossing things in the middle of the park or making marauding runs past other midfield players.

Doucoure has also started to add more goals to his game, finishing the last Premier League campaign with seven goals compared to just the one he managed the previous term.

The Frenchman has been linked with a host of big clubs since the new year including Arsenal and Tottenham (via Evening Standard), but now looks set to remain at Vicarage Road for the foreseeable future after putting pen to paper on a new five-year deal last month.

TT Grade: A-

TT Verdict:

Doucoure’s impact at Watford has been huge and his overall presence in midfield has made the Hornets such a tricky opponent to play against, especially at home.

Technically, however, Seri is just on another level. His passing and ability to strike the ball so well from outside the box — something he has already shown this season with his goal against Burnley — makes him one of the most gifted midfielders in the Premier League.

With the way Watford are playing, Doucoure may just come out on top when the Hornets and Fulham meet. But in this battle, the former Rennes man will have to settle for second place.

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