Why Crystal Palace should plot a January swoop for Vincent Aboubakar
Crystal Palace have recovered from a slow start to the new Premier League campaign with back-to-back wins over Manchester United and Aston Villa.
Things were looking rocky after the defeat at Sheffield United but Roy Hodgson and co. responded in some style in the last two weeks as they entered the international break with some positivity.
Despite all of that, the Eagles’ problem continues to be scoring goals. They’ve been a decent defensive unit over the years, especially since Roy Hodgson took over, but the south Londoners have struggled royally in front of goal.
They are a team massively dependent on Wilfried Zaha and amidst a lot of speculation during the transfer window, keeping hold of the Ivorian was the best bit of business Palace did in the entire summer.
However, the Eagles just cannot be overly dependent on Zaha and must find answers to their goalscoring problems. Jordan Ayew, whose loan move from Swansea was made permanent this summer, has shown some form by netting two in last two games.
Christian Benteke has struggled with injuries and poor form in the last two seasons, so Hodgson certainly cannot rely on him to deliver the goods consistently.
For now on, Hodgson will need to make do with the resources he has now but when the transfer window reopens in January, he must prioritise signing a new centre-forward.
Back in March 2017, the Sun had claimed that Crystal Palace had scouted FC Porto striker Vincent Aboubakar, who was then plying his trade on loan with Besiktas.
Vincent Aboubakar, 27, suffered cruciate ligament injury last summer that saw him miss action for almost eight months for FC Porto. He returned from injury right at the business end of the season, making a couple of cameo appearances off the bench.
Now fully fit and running, Palace must reignite their interest in the Cameroonian and sign him in January.
Aboubakar has been a solid goalscorer for Porto since signing from FC Lorient in 2013. He enjoyed the most prolific season of his career in 2017/18 when he netted 26 goals in 43 games across all competitions.
The Cameroon international is quick, powerful and strong, good on both foot and a devastating finisher when presented with a goalscoring opportunity. He possesses blistering pace and loves to play off the shoulder of the last defender.
The ex-Lorient man is a tough player and can play with his back to his goal while holding up the ball and bringing his teammates into the game.
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Standing at just below 6ft 2in, Aboubakar is very strong in the air and would act as a fantastic focal point for Palace to build their attacks. In fact, due to his speed, agility and movement, he’ll be a straight upgrade on the misfiring Benteke.
A new centre-forward is a must, and if Palace could manage to get their hands on Aboubakar, chances of Hodgson’s side breaking into the top half of the table would certainly increase this season.