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Seven Premier League Players With a Point to Prove in the Second Half of the Season

14/01/2015 17:50 GMT | Updated 16/03/2015 09:59 GMT

The Premier League season has passed the half way point and the table is beginning to take shape.

People are already talking about who the stars of the campaign have been, but there are a number of high profile individuals that have been rather disappointing over the last few months and must do more to justify their billing.

​Here's a look at seven players that have a point to prove in the second half of the campaign.

7. Remy Cabella

Newcastle invested a lot in French international winger Remy Cabella when they signed him from Montpellier over the summer. The Magpies paid around £10million for the 24-year-old and handed him a six-year contract, but over the first half of the season he struggled to repay the club's faith.

Cabella has all the potential to be Newcastle's 21st Century David Ginola, though moments of silky brilliance have been much too few and far between.

He has enjoyed something of a fresh start since Alan Pardew left St James' Park and his most recent outing against Chelsea was very promising to say the least. However, Cabella must continue in the same vein over the next few months.

6. Danny Welbeck

Danny Welbeck traded Manchester United for Arsenal looking to reignite his career and get a chance to play in his favoured central position. However, one Champions League hat-trick aside, he hasn't exactly set north London alight since his move to the capital.

He has managed only four Premier League goals in 16 appearances so far and now has to compete with a fit again Olivier Giroud for the main striker role. Injury trouble hasn't helped of late either, ruling Welbeck out of all the Gunners' games in 2015 so far.

At just £16million for a 24-year-old England regular, Arsene Wenger still looks like he got himself a relative bargain, but the player needs to do more.

5. Tom Cleverley

Tom Cleverley's summer loan to Aston Villa was his big chance to prove wrong the doubters that claimed he wasn't cut out for the top level.

​Villa manager Paul Lambert is said to be keen to tie up a £7.5million permanent deal, but one might expect a player who was seemingly determined to fight for his future at Manchester United to have loftier ambitions than a club still nervously looking over its shoulder at relegation.

So far, Cleverley hasn't stood out in an average team that has struggled for goals and ultimately he needs to prove with his performances on the pitch that he can be more.

4. Romelu Lukaku

Romelu Lukaku's fine form in 2013/14 was not only a highlight of Everton's campaign, but for the Premier League as a whole. On loan from Chelsea, the young Belgian ​bagged 15 goals as the Toffees finished fifth, with the club smashing their transfer record to sign him up permanently in the summer.

Unfortunately, in the months since securing his £28million move, Lukaku has been rather hit and miss. The whole team have found things hard this season and the 21-year-old hasn't been able to inspire his colleagues with the kind of driving powerful performances he is capable of.

There have been elements of improvement in the last few games though, notably against Manchester City at Goodison Park, which is a positive indicator.

3. Eliaquim Mangala

Seen as one of the hottest defensive prospects in all of Europe, Eliaquim Mangala joined Manchester City for a staggering £32million over the summer. Though his top class potential wasn't doubted, eyebrows were raised considering he couldn't command a single minute of playing time for an average French team at the World Cup.

Following fitness issues, Mangala failed to displace Martin Demichelis in the opening weeks of the season and even though he is now a regular starter, he still looks like the weak-link in City's back-line.

At only 23 years of age, it is perhaps unfair to judge him so soon after arriving in the Premier League, but he certainly needs to begin justifying his vast price tag.

2. Mario Balotelli

Mario Balotelli's summer move to Liverpool was billed as his last chance to make something of himself at a big club. He has already blown opportunities at Inter Milan, Manchester City and AC Milan and there should perhaps have been a clue in the reduced £16million fee that Liverpool paid.

Brendan Rodgers acknowledged it was a gamble and that gamble so far hasn't paid off. Balotelli has failed to score a single Premier League goal in 12 appearances.

The Italian's ability has never been questioned, but over the next few months he needs to get his attitude right. He won't just be fighting for his future at Anfield though, rather his career as a whole.

1. Radamel Falcao

When ​Radamel Falcao arrived at Manchester United in the summer, he probably still hadn't returned to real full fitness following the devastating knee injury he suffered last January.

As a result, the Colombian has been a slow starter, taking time to regain the kind of sharpness that made him one of the most feared strikers in the world. His season at Old Trafford has been stop/start to say the least, but his Premier League minutes to goal ratio is actually reasonably good.

There are visible signs that Falcao could be a tremendous asset if he can get himself physically fit and now is the time to prove that he is not a washed up 'has-been'.

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