Why West Brom offering Hal Robson-Kanu a new deal doesn’t look justified
The 30-year-old former Welsh international was set to be out of contract in West Midlands next summer but the Baggies have moved quickly to offer him fresh terms beyond the end of the ongoing campaign.
Teenage starlet Nathan Ferguson, who has established himself as one of the mainstays of the first-team in his breakthrough season at the senior level, is also expected to follow in the footsteps of Hal Robson-Kanu and commit his future to the club in the coming weeks. (h/t Express & Star)
Robson-Kanu, who joined West Brom from Reading back in the summer of 2016, has made a total of 99 appearances for the Baggies in all competitions, scoring nine and setting up another couple in the process.
The 30-year-old wasn’t considered for a regular starting role in the previous campaign by former manager Darren Moore, with Robson-Kanu only making 14 starts and featuring as a substitute on 21 occasions in the Championship the last term.
A red card suspension meant that he wasn’t available to take part in the playoffs, as West Brom crashed out against Aston Villa.
The former 44-cap Welsh international managed meagre returns of 4 goals in 1489 minutes of Championship football last season and early signs suggest that he could be set for a similar bit-part role under Slaven Bilic.
West Brom currently sit atop the Championship standings following a flying start to life under Bilic, with the Baggies laying down an early marker as one of the favourites for automatic promotion.
To that end, though, Robson-Kanu has had little part to play in the club’s surge to the top of the table so far. The 30-year-old has started only once in the Championship while featuring on four occasions as a substitute, with Bilic clearly not favouring the veteran as a regular starter.
His limited involvement and failure to make any kind of a positive impact over the last year or so might have led to the fans believing that an exit was on the cards for the veteran come next summer but, in a twist of fate, the Baggies have decided to offer him fresh terms to extend his stay at the club.
To put things into perspective, West Brom’s decision to tie Hal Robson-Kanu down to a new deal hardly makes any sense moving forward, unless, of course, the Baggies are preparing to cash in on the versatile forward in January to boost their transfer kitty.
Capable of playing in any position across the forward line, the left-footed ace has given the fans some sheer moments of brilliance to savour and admire but he has never been able to establish himself as a regular starter, either in the Premier League or in the Championship.
The former Reading man has promised a lot over the course of his stay in the West Midlands but has hardly shown the consistency to make a big impact and, with the Welshman set to turn 31 at the end of the ongoing campaign, his departure on a free transfer next summer would have made perfect sense.
West Brom had been a Premier League club for eight successive seasons prior to their relegation from at the end of the 2017-18 campaign and, given that they are one of the promotion favourites in the Championship, the Baggies need to turn their attention to younger strikers to build a strong platform for the future in a bid to reclaim their top-flight status.
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Suffice to say, Hal Robson-Kanu has been an underachiever over the past three seasons at West Brom. Unless the motive of offering him a new deal is to facilitate a move elsewhere in January, it is hard to justify such a stance from the club’s point of view.