West Bromwich Albion are a club who are famed for their ability to bounce back from disappointment and consistently return to the top-flight shortly after suffering relegation, and with Dwight Gayle spearheading a clinical attack alongside Jay Rodriguez they’re beginning to look like a strong contender for promotion this season.
Some players are simply made for the Championship and it’s beginning to becoming increasingly apparent that Dwight Gayle is one of them. The 27-year-old attacker scored 23 goals from 32 appearances on his debut season following a £10 million switch as Newcastle secured promotion to the top-flight in the 2016/17 season, but he struggled to emulate that level of potency in the Premier League.
A return of just 6 goals from 35 appearances convinced Rafa Benitez and Mike Ashley to swap him for West Brom’s Salomon Rondon in the summer, but that decision already looks regretful to say the least.
Rondon has failed to score in his first 4 Premier League appearances for the Magpies, although it must be considered that the service into him has left plenty to be desired.
Meanwhile, Gayle has continued to thrive in the Championship and his early season form suggests he could easily go on to breach the 30-goal mark.
With 8 goals and 5 assists already to his name from 11 league appearances, Darren Moore has a real gem on his hands who will make all the difference to the Baggies’ promotion bid, providing he remains fit.
That Gayle was so successful in his last spell in the Championship implies that this is much more than a purple patch – he is lethal at this level and West Brom are the biggest winners from the swap deal involving Rondon.
Although his form in the Premier League was not as clinical as Benitez would have liked from his main centre-forward, his return should have been considered in the context of the limited number of chances Newcastle created.
It’s impossible to legislate for injury setbacks but, considering Gayle’s form and Rondon’s recent injury problem, the Newcastle hierarchy must be starting to question their summer swap deal.
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