From John Stones to Michail Antonio, a wealth of Football League talents have been snapped up by Premier League sides and gone on to shine, in recent years.
With managers across the top-flight looking for a savvy bargain in the January sales, here are five men who could be gracing the Premier League very soon.
We’ll begin with a man whose journey has taken him up from Non-League to Bees, and could soon go further…
Scott Hogan (Brentford)
Four years ago, the Salford-born striker was playing up front for Northern Premier League outfit Ashton United. Currently the Championship’s second-highest scorer this season with 13 goals in 21 games, it’s been a meteoric rise for the ice-cool finisher.
Quick, strong and with an excellent record in front of goal, surely it’s only a matter of time before he takes another step-up.
Conor Hourihane (Barnsley)
With four strikes and nine assists so far this season, the hugely creative midfielder has been involved in 38 per cent of all the goals the Tykes have scored in the Championship.
Now Barnsley captain, he’s led by example since receiving the armband in December of last year. Having starred in last season’s play-offs as Barnsley won promotion from League One, there’s no doubt he’s a big-game player. Don’t be surprised if he’s making a key contribution for a top-flight club come January.
Cyrus Christie (Derby County)
They may have struggled in front of goal this season, but Derby County have been rock-solid at the back – and nobody has been more key in building that defensive strength than Republic of Ireland international Christie.
Physically imposing, good on the ball and boasting a spurt of pace, the 24-year-old right-back is quite probably the best full-back anywhere in the division – and with just six months left on his contract, could be available for a very modest sum.
Josh Morris (Scunthorpe United)
It’s fair to say that Iron boss Graham Alexander has taken the Iron midfielder to a new level. The 25-year-old had netted just 11 times in the first 119 games of his senior career before his summer move to Glanford Park. Since then, he’s netted 15 times in 21 games.
While he is a superbly instinctive finisher – as his hat-trick in the 4-1 victory at Walsall shows – Morris can offer more than just regular goals, with nine assists in all competitions already this season.
Suffice to say, he could more than hold his own at a far higher level than League One, and Scunny could struggle to keep hold of him in January.
Cameron McGeehan (Luton Town)
Watching McGeehan, it’s hard to believe he’s still just 21. Possessing a stinging strike, a superb range of passing and an intelligent reading of the game, the Hatters man has a maturity and technical gift most players develop later in their careers.
A natural goalscorer from central midfield, the intelligent Northern Irishman is also a real threat on corners, with his smart runs and precise heading having produced many a Luton goal from set-pieces.
Do you reckon these EFL aces will secure a Premier League move in January? And are there other potential top-flight buys we’ve missed off the list? Let us know in the comments section below.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing