West Brom have turned their attentions elsewhere after being unable to agree on a deal for one of their mooted targets, according to fresh reports…
Sky Sports reporter Lyall Thomas has claimed the Baggies are eyeing a loan move for Galatasaray striker Mbaye Diagne as a deal for Hoffenheim forward Ishak Belfodil fell through last week.
It’s thought that the 29-year-old is available with an option-to-buy at the end of the season should Albion survive in the Premier League, despite the talisman having two-and-a-half years to run on his current contract.
“We have tried to acquire at least one or two new players this week but that hasn’t come to fruition,” said a desperate Sam Allardyce earlier in the week.
Whilst 10-time Senegal international has never played in the Premier League, he cannot be written off despite the need for top-flight experience as his career goalscoring record is mightily impressive.
In just 38 appearances for the Lions, he’s found the net 22 times, including 11 this season, via Transfermarkt.
Indeed, Diagne has proven to be a prolific marksman wherever he’s been – at Turkish rivals Kasimpasa, he bagged 32 goals in 36 appearances, while on loan at Club Brugge last term, he quickly racked up four in six league matches, and during his time in China at Tianjin Teda, he found the net 15 times in 46 games, also per Transfermarkt.
A record of 94 goals in 164 career games isn’t something to turn your nose up at, that’s one goal every 1.7 matches.
In some ways, this move would very much echo that of Salomon Rondon back in 2015, a relatively unknown striker signed from Rubin Kazan for £12m. He had only played in his home country of Venezuela, Spain and Russia prior to the move – he turned out to be quite the player, didn’t he?
Rondon hit at least seven goals in three successive Premier League seasons before Albion were relegated to the Championship and as a result, he joined Newcastle where he would score 11 goals in the top-flight.
Speaking about his own playing style to the Guardian in May 2020, Diagne said: ” I’m big and strong, I can hold up the ball and lay it off, I’m good in the air and I’m a finisher.”
Indeed, he has won an average of 2.7 aerial duels and has fired off a whopping 2.6 shots per game throughout the course of his career, per WhoScored, which far exceeds that of summer signing Karlan Grant (0.8 aerials won, 1.3 shots per game).
Again, that only draws further similarities to Rondon and is certainly something that the Baggies are lacking with the 6-foot speedster Grant, especially since Charlie Austin has gone to QPR on loan.
The £44k-per-week marksman would be a fantastic addition this month, so it’s on sporting director Luke Dowling to sanction this swoop at all costs.
AND in other news, Forget Pereira: £17.5k-p/w monster stole the show for Allardyce…