A report in the Stoke Sentinel has recently revealed that Stoke City may weigh up a loan offer to bring Crystal Palace forward Connor Wickham to the bet365 Stadium in the coming weeks. The Potters have made a poor start after losing to Leeds United in the opening match of the season which was followed by a disappointing draw against Brentford last weekend.
It is understood that Stoke boss Gary Rowett is looking to recruit Wickham on loan. However, he is not his first-choice loan option. The English striker was once considered as one of the best young prospects in English football, but his career had hit a stumbling block when he sustained a severe cruciate ligament injury which kept him out of action for nearly two years.
Palace are now willing to let him leave on loan so that the 25-year-old can gain some first-team experience on a weekly basis which could help him get his career back on track. Rowett needs to delve into the loan market as his current squad lacks quality and depth to mount a promotion challenge this season.
The Stoke boss recently has admitted that he needs to sign some players on loan even after bringing in seven fresh faces during the summer transfer period. Wickham has already proven his worth in English football having made 87 appearances in the EFL Championship, scoring 22 goals while grabbing eight assists. He also has 108 Premier League matches under his belt and has found the back of the net 18 times in the English top-flight.
The Ipswich academy product has represented his nation at various youth levels, but there are still question marks on whether he can bounce back from his recent injuries. Wickham is an ‘old-school’ centre-forward and knows what it takes to find the back of the net. He boasts incredible strength which helps him hold the ball up and bring his teammates into the game.
The English talent is also a poacher inside the box and is fast and effective with his reactions and finishing respectively. His shots also pack a lot of power while his heading accuracy is amongst the best frontmen in the EFL Championship. All in all, Rowett should do everything in his ability to sign Wickham on loan if he is serious about his team challenging for a top 6 place this season. The Palace sensation is precisely the type of player who can thrive with regular first-team opportunities at the bet365 Stadium over the course of the new campaign.
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