For much of the last three years, Crystal Palace have been regularly linked with a move for Senegalese striker Khouma Babacar; it’s become something of a running joke for our supporters and surprise, surprise, it’s a story that’s been back in the news this week.
The 26-year-old is currently on the books of Italian side Sassuolo, where he scored seven goals and grabbed two assists across 29 Serie A appearances last season but with the Italian sporting press suggesting that his current employers would be open to engineering a sale, Palace have been thrown back into the mix.
Given the length of time we’ve been linked with Babacar, you’d think our scouting and general understanding of what he’d bring to our side would be pretty extensive but when you examine the struggle he’s had to nail down a regular starting spot with Sassuolo, there must surely be concerns over whether or not he could cut it in the high-pressure environment of the Premier League from week to week.
With Espanyol now interested in taking him from Italy to La Liga, I can’t help but wonder if Palace are just the English club Khouma’s agent uses to drum up interest in their client. Given the lack of concrete movement from our end over the course of the last few years, something doesn’t quite add up.
There seems to be genuine hope from within the Palace camp that both Benteke and Wickham will step up to the plate from August onwards but even so, the involvement of Michy Batshuayi between January and May highlighted the difference that having a true finisher can make to our side in the final third.
Does Babacar fit the bill? I’m far from sold as things stand, it’ll take much more than a couple of conveniently placed articles to convince me that Palace are actually pursuing him.