According to a recent report from Tutto Mercato Web, Crystal Palace are interested in a January move for striker David Okereke. The 21-year-old currently plays his football in Italy with second tier side Spezia and has done so since making his professional debut for the club back in 2016, with his impressive goal-scoring exploits seemingly attracting the interest of Eagles manager Roy Hodgson.
And that’s because a report from Tutto Mercato Web suggests that the Premier League club are eyeing up a late January move for the 21-year-old in a bid to bolster their attacking ranks, with a Palace move for Okereke potentially equipping Hodgson with the striker he so desperately needs at Selhurst Park.
Ultimately, the biggest issue Palace have faced in the first half of the Premier League season is their inability to regularly put the ball in the back of the net, what with Hodgson’s men having bagged just 23 times in their 23 league matches – only Huddersfield Town (13), Cardiff City (20), and Newcastle United (21) have scored fewer times this term.
And with Andros Townsend and Luka Milivojevic the only men to have netted more than five times in all competitions this season, neither of whom are out-and-out strikers, it’s plainly obvious just how much of a struggle things have been in the final third of the field – in fact, Jordan Ayew is their top-scoring striker this season with a paltry two goals.
And with star man Wilfried Zaha even struggling to conjure up magic in the final third, having netted only three times this season, it underlines just how much of an issue scoring goals is for Palace – it’s an issue that leaves them very much looking over the shoulder as opposed to looking up the Premier League table.
Yet a move for in-form Okereke could go some way to finally equipping Hodgson with the striker he so obviously needs.
The 21-year-old may be little known among several English football fans, but his recent goal-scoring exploits in Italy suggest a forward playing the best football of his career having bagged six goals in 16 Serie B games for Spezia this term, one of which coming their 4-4 draw with Brescia at the weekend.
And with eight assists for the second tier outfit this time round as well, the Nigerian sensation not only has goal-scoring pedigree, but he’s a creator as well – and in a side scoring so few goals, that could come in very handy as the campaign progresses.
Significantly, Okereke would be arriving at Selhurst Park, were a deal to be completed, in great form to take into the second half of the season – too many January deals are for players who haven’t played much football in the first half of the campaign, and as such are low on confidence and not match-ready.
But that simply wouldn’t be the case for the 21-year-old given his exertions for Spezia this term, which is why a Palace move for the Nigerian might well equip Hodgson with the striker he so desperately needs at Selhurst Park.
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