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Watt View - A Tale Of Two Strikers
Wednesday, 26th Aug 2020 11:07 by Matt Watts

This week Matt looks at a couple of the strikers that have been linked with Saints this week and compares their relative merits, but will we need to sell to buy ?

It’s been a tale of two strikers in the rumour mill this past week, with Saints linked to Arsenal’s young Gunner Folarin Balogun and Watford’s Danny Welbeck - both of whom have something to prove.

On first glance, it would seem the two players are at completely different ends of the spectrum given Welbeck’s lengthy Premier League career and the fact Balogun has yet to make his senior debut.

It could be argued, looking at the situations of both players, that one of these potential moves is way off the mark, with a fair assumption being the club is either looking for experience or youth when bolstering its attacking options - but not both.

Yet, despite Welbeck having seemingly been around forever, the former England international is not yet out of his twenties.

Balogun, although yet to make his debut for the first team, scored an impressive 10 goals in 15 Premier League 2 appearances for the under-23s last season which is no mean feat for a 19-year-old and, as well as Saints, is attracting interest from clubs across Europe.

So there may be less disparity between the two than you would be led to believe on the face of it and the valuations of around £5.5 million and £8 million respectively pretty evenly matched when taking into consideration age versus potential.

Welbeck, a Premier League winner with Manchester United in 2012-13 with a value of £16 million at the time of his move to Arsenal in 2014, will be looking to bounce back after a disjointed season that resulted in the Hornets’ relegation to the Championship.

Balogun, meanwhile, will be desperate to make his mark and prove his worth having turned down a new contract at the Emirates in search of first team football and progression at the right club.

Either of these two would be cost-effective additions to the squad with both offering something a little different to complement the attacking options already available at St Mary’s.

Any move may hinge on the departures of forwards Guido Carillo or, as mentioned in recent weeks, Michael Obafemi, with the latter interesting Aston Villa.

While an exit for Carrillo is a must, Obafemi, 20, has shown promise over the past season, coming to prominence with significant contributions against Chelsea and Manchester United.

I wouldn’t be opposed to seeing him develop further with the club, though an offer in the region of £10 million to enable the club to bring in a fresh face might be too tempting to turn down.

Photo: Action Images

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ElijahK added 13:50 - Aug 26
Why we’d want to even buy another striker does confuse me seeing that currently we need a central midfielder most, then defenders, then wingers etc, I mean buying an striker is at the bottom of the list as we’ve got King Ings who was amazing last season along with Adams who seemed to get going at the end of last season, then on the bench we’ve got Obafemi and Long! I mean it just makes no sense as our two backup strikers are both decent (and Obafemi’s quite young with decent potential, whilst Long is great at defending up front) so why we even need another striker, or at least until we get some of the positions in which we’re weaker in just completely baffles me!

davepid added 14:25 - Aug 26
I’m afraid I have to disagree with Elijahk about describing Long as a striker. His record is 27 premier goals for us out of 174 matches. That is one in seven stretching to nearly one in 8 if you discount his hat trick game. He misses so many glorious chances ( Wolves at home this season comes to mind) and it’s that more than his goal/ game ratio that annoys me so much. Yes he runs and runs , wins free kicks and ( more recently) learnt to hold the ball. But to be called a striker you really must not miss the easier chances he fails to put away.

NewburySaint added 19:24 - Aug 26
Balogun sounds like an interesting proposition but, as I said last week regarding Welbeck, please god, no!!

SaintBrock added 11:15 - Aug 27
Rumours are no good, some signs of real activity are needed

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