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West Brom would solve a big issue by signing Ajayi

This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…

According to journalist Alan Nixon on Twitter, West Brom are looking to do a deal for Rotherham’s Semi Ajayi.

What’s the word?

West Brom’s summer finally looks as though it’s beginning to build ahead of steam.

After Slaven Bilic admitted the need for Albion to get to work in the transfer market, it appears as though his prayers have been answered with a number of incomings now potentially on the table.

Kenneth Zohore has been the subject of an £8m bid from the Baggies whilst they’re also chasing Sporting’s Matheus Pereira on loan.

However, another player they’re lining up, per Nixon, is versatile Rotherham man Ajayi.

The journalist took to Twitter to reveal the news before Express & Star’s Matt Wilson confirmed they were indeed keen on the Nigerian.

The missing link?

Capped six times by Nigeria, Ajayi played like a man possessed at times for Rotherham last term. Originally known as more of a defensive player, he was given a new lease of life by Paul Warne who started to play him further forward.

The 25-year-old came through the youth ranks at Arsenal but it hadn’t been until last season that his career truly started to kick on.

Afforded the chance of playing in a holding role, he became incredibly effective in forward areas.

Last term, he scored seven goals, all of which came from midfield.

Standing at 6 foot 4, Ajayi is a huge presence in the middle of the park but it’s his considerable impact in the final third that can give West Brom something they’re desperately missing.

Reflecting upon 2018/19, Albion missed someone who could provide goals from deep. Matt Phillips found the net on five occasions but only one of those came when he was playing centrally, as opposed to on the wings.

But when it came to the deeper-lying midfielders in the Baggies side, none managed more than two strikes with Chris Brunt, Jake Livermore and Stefan Johansen all finding the net just twice.

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The Baggies had Jay Rodriguez and Dwight Gayle bagging on a regular basis last term, netting 46 between them but with the pair now not at the club, finding more goalscorers will be key.

As a result, bringing in someone like Ajayi can only benefit Bilic and West Brom in their bid to achieve promotion.

Of course, his main duties will likely be defensively if he does sign, but his qualities in attack cannot be doubted.

Article title: West Brom would solve a big issue by signing Ajayi

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