Fulham are facing a hugely important summer transfer window where they will need to show their intensions to bounce straight back after being relegated from the Premier League.
Scott Parker’s side will be needing to address key areas of the squad where they came up short last season and will also need to replace a couple of their loan players that have returned to their parent clubs. The forward area is certainly a place that Fulham have to improve in the summer, with them already having opted not to take up their permanent option on Josh Maja.
It has been reported by TEAMtalk that Fulham are one of a group of sides interested in making a potential move for Orlando forward Daryl Dike this summer. That comes with the 20-year-old having enjoyed an excellent spell with the Tykes in the second half of this term.
With Fulham entering the race for Dike, we take a look at THREE qualities he could bring to them if he arrives this summer…
Much-needed extra goal threat
The most obvious quality that Dike would bring to Fulham is a much-needed added extra goal threat in the final third. The main reason why Parker’s side dropped down from the Premier League this season was because of the lack of cutting edge they had upfront. The club’s top scorer was Bobby Reid with seven, then came Aleksandar Mitrovic and Ademola Lookman with four.
Mitrovic and Reid should be able to score goals in the Championship next term for sure and have both proven their pedigree in the second tier in their careers. However, Fulham will need more from elsewhere. Dike could be the man to provide those with him having already shown he can find vital moments of quality in the second tier with nine goals in 21 games for Barnsley.
The 20-year-old has shown that he can score different types of goals with his finishing in the box very good when he gets chances, whilst he can also find the back of the net with longer-ranger efforts as well. Those are qualities that might be pivotal for Parker’s side.
Quiz: Can you remember how many league goals each of Fulham ‘s last 15 top goalscorers scored?
Physical presence upfront if Mitrovic is not in Parker’s plans
Mitrovic has already been linked with a potential move away from Fulham this summer, with Roma having been linked with a move for him. That comes with the forward having fallen down the pecking order at Craven Cottage this season and being limited to just 13 league starts.
If Parker decides to cash in on the Serbia international or continue to place him on the bench if he does stay, then Fulham will need someone else upfront to provide a physical presence in the English second tier. Dike has already proven that he brings that to the table and his physicality proved difficult to handle for a host of Championship defenders during his time with Barnsley.
Mobility and tenacity in the final third
Another quality that Dike would bring to the table for Fulham is his mobility off the ball and his willingness to run into the channels and run in behind defences to create chances for his himself. Those qualities also help him to create space for his team-mates in the final third as well and help them find better scoring chances in their opponent’s penalty area.
Dike also has the ability to lead the press from the front and can help to constantly put defenders under pressure when they are in possession. That could help Parker get his side further up the pitch, which is something he had tried to do at times in the Premier League this season when he deployed a higher defensive line.