Palace’s interest in Fiorentina striker Khouma Babacar has been well documented over the last couple of weeks but now, Gazzetta dello Sport are suggesting that Brighton and West Brom have thrown their hats into the ring for him too.
With just one fit out-and-out striker on our books in the shape of Christian Benteke, the recent goalscoring form of winger Bakary Sako has been a wonderful boost to Roy Hodgson and the team; not that it’s dampened our desire to bring in attacking reinforcements before the window closes in two week’s time.
Whilst Babacar has made 17 appearances so far this season, the majority of his game time has been off the bench; a fact that hasn’t stopped him from netting five goals along the way. Obviously, I don’t know enough about the Viola’s squad to make judgments over Stefano Pioli’s tactical choices but it does seem a little baffling to see Babacar being used so sparingly when he bagged a mightily impressive 14 goals in 31 appearances for Fiorentina last term.
Having been with the Serie A outfit for nine years now, I can understand why the 24-year-old is thinking long and hard about the decision to leave Italy for a different country, culture and style of play but I honestly feel as though Roy Hodgson is the ideal manager to bring the best out of him over the next year or two.
The former England boss’ man-management has shone through during his four-month reign at Selhurst Park and given the fact that Roy is known to be fluent in Italian, Babacar would have no concerns over a language barrier at the training ground in his early days with us, which would surely make a difference to his transition between the two leagues.
With Brighton having already bid for him themselves last summer and West Brom in obvious need of more firepower I’m not surprised to see them both linked with Khouma but after such a long period of courtship, it would be lovely to see the club tie this deal up in the next few days.
Should anything significant occur, it will be reported on HLTCO as soon as possible.