Why signing Benteke would solve Aston Villa’s finishing woes
According to The Telegraph, Aston Villa have contacted Crystal Palace over the availability of their former striker Christian Benteke.
The Belgian forward, who was a hero at Villa Park, scoring 49 goals from 101 matches a few years ago, has now come under the radar of the Villans as a replacement for their injured striker Wesley.
Manager Dean Smith’s Aston Villa have not been left with many options in the striking department since Wesley has been ruled out for the remainder of the season due to a serious knee injury.
With Jonathan Kodjia being the only other recognizable forward left in the squad, Villa need a new finisher amongst them to cling on to their hopes of staying in the Premier League.
The Villans are in a difficult situation at the moment with club staying just one spot and one point above the relegation zone after a string of poor results this season.
That said, Villa are now looking at the possibility of bringing back their former player Benteke, who, meanwhile, has had a dry spell at Selhurst Park.
The Belgian forward has not managed to score a single goal this term even after making 15 appearances for the Eagles. He wasn’t any better last season, scoring just one goal from 16 matches.
The once prolific finisher seems to have undergone a dip in form ever since he left Villa Park for Liverpool in the summer of 2015.
At Liverpool, Benteke failed to emulate the form he once did in Villa, staying just a season and scoring 10 goals from 42 matches across all competitions.
Benteke then impressed in his debut season with the Eagles, hitting the target 15 times after being offloaded from Anfield the very next season.
However, since then, his career has taken a downward spiral with the forward managing just four goals altogether in his last two seasons for Crystal Palace.
This has seen him fall down the pecking order under manager Roy Hodgson, playing mostly second fiddle to Ghanaian forward Jordan Ayew, who arrived last summer.
Meanwhile, Villa would be wise to land Benteke on loan this month. Only time will tell if a permanent switch can ever happen but regardless, the club could truly use his skills.
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Despite his poor form, Benteke is an established striker in the Premier League, scoring 81 of his 127 club career goals on English soil.
Blessed with a good physique, the 6ft. 3in Benteke is good at aerial duels and could be a major threat in the opposition boxes with his excellent headers.
Aston Villa are short of players in the finishing role and landing a former player like Benteke would be a major boost of confidence for both the club and its fans.
Moreover, Villa have missed an established striker in their ranks, with their forwards failing continuously. Being a proven performer in the past, Benteke could help them avoid a trip back into the Championship.
Hence, Villa signing Benteke would solve their finishing woes.