Fulham are interested in signing Arsenal striker Folarin Balogun as they prepare for a return to the Premier League next season, a report from The Daily Mail has claimed.
The Cottagers could seal promotion back to the top-flight at the first time of asking with victory over Preston on Tuesday night, and it seems they are already putting plans in place for the summer window.
According to this latest update, Balogun, who is currently on loan from Arsenal at Fulham’s Championship rivals Midlesbrough, is among a number of players targeted for a move to Craven Cottage for next season.
But what would a deal to bring Balogun to Fulham actually mean for Marco Silva’s side, as they look to re-establish themselves in the top-flight?
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Here, we’ve taken a look at some of the big questions that could be asked about this potential move, right here.
Is it a good potential move?
This does have the potential to be a rather useful signing for Fulham if they pull it off.
Balogun is certainly a promising young player, as his previous exploits in Arsenal’s first-team have already shown.
Fulham will likely need some additional attacking firepower if they are to avoid another swift relegation back to the Championship next season, and Balogun could thrive off the supply he would receive at Craven Cottage.
Given Balogun will also likely want to prove himself in the top-flight after this spell in the Championship, there is a chance this deal could work well for all involved.
Would he start?
It would certainly give Fulham manager Marco Silva something of a selection headache if Balogun was to join.
The Cottagers have often used just the one centre forward this season, and it would be hard not to give that role to Aleksandar Mitrovic – to begin with at least – after how good he has been again this season.
But given Arsenal’s need for strikers following Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s departure, and with Alexandre Lacazette’s future uncertain, Balogun may feel there is a chance for him to break into the senior side at The Emirates next season.
As a result, the 20-year-old would likely need some guarantee of considerable game time, to convince him to make a move away from the Gunners to Fulham in the summer.
What does he offer?
There are a fair few attributes that Balogun could offer Fulham if he joined.
As has already been mentioned, the Arsenal man would provide an extra option upfront for Fulham, and his exploits for both the Gunners and Middlesbrough have shown he can get goals at a high level.
At 20-years-old, Balogun also has the vast majority of his career ahead of him, meaning he could potentially be a long-term asset at Craven Cottage.
Beyond that, if Arsenal were to let him leave, the striker would likely feel he has something to prove in the Premier League, and that too could provide him with yet more motivation to up his game and succeed if he was to join Fulham, which would see that added effort to their benefit.