Watford are intending to use Andre Gray and cash as part of a deal to lure Blackburn into selling in-demand striker Adam Armstrong, as reported by The Sun.
The Hornets bounced straight back to the Premier League at the first time of asking last season, and whilst bringing themselves back to the division, they are hopeful of also bringing one of the Championship’s brightest talents.
Armstrong, who has already been the subject of a rejected bid from Southampton, scored 29 league goals for Blackburn last year but was narrowly beaten by the record-breaking Ivan Toney.
30-year-old Gray has now been offered to the Lancashire club with Watford keen on bolstering their attacking options for what is an important year.
We take a look at three qualities that Gray would bring to Blackburn, should an agreement be struck…
Gray is undeniably quick – an asset that his teammates over the years have consistently benefitted from.
Not only will he beat defenders for pace, but his attacking movement allows him to race miles clear of the opposition’s back-line.
His pace has been something that has impressed the footballing world from Premier League level right back to his non-league days. As he has progressed as a footballer, his attacking intelligence has improved, meaning he has learned the ability to time his runs to perfection.
Speed is a defender’s worst nightmare and this aspect of his game has been causing problems for opposing defences for years.
The knack to score goals
Gray has proved to be a prolific striker at Championship level for several years. The Watford forward has scored 46 times in 118 Championship appearances – a figure that would be much higher if it was not for a difficult spell last year.
Possessing a thunderous strike, the 30-year-old tends to strike the ball early to try and catch the goalkeeper out. By operating this way, he has seen a number of his goals over the years, go to the goalkeeper’s near post.
Blackburn are a side who create a comparatively higher amount of chances in the Championship, and when coupled with a clinical striker, then that is a recipe for success.
He might be predominantly known for his speed in behind, but Gray’s developed attacking intelligence means he is also able to hold the ball up and bring others into play.
His ability to spin in behind and drop deeper and act as a target man makes it very difficult for defenders to anticipate what he will do.
Perhaps the way that Blackburn operates means that his pace would be more beneficial, but a player that leaves a defender guessing is doing the right thing.