This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Stoke City are one of a number of clubs that are lining up a loan move for Manchester City wonderkid Liam Delap next season, per TEAMtalk.
The 18-year-old has taken the Premier League 2 competition by storm this season, scoring 20 goals in 18 outings and it looks like he’s ready to make the step into regular senior football.
Delap also scored his first City goal for their first team this season in the EFL Cup but if Stoke want him they’re going to have to battle other clubs, with the likes of Derby County, Cardiff and West Brom all watching the teenager as well.
The Potters would like to think they hold an advantage with Delap’s father, Rory, a former player at the Bet365 Stadium, but would he be a good addition to the Potters’ ranks? We’ve asked the FLW team for their opinions…
I think it’d be a worthwhile signing.
I think Stoke might be wise in looking to add to their attacking options this summer and Michael O’Neill certainly seems to have a preference for bringing in talented youngsters, with Delap certainly a player that fits that particular description.
Delap has all the attributes you need to be a good centre-forward at Championship level already and he’ll be hungry to show what he can do if he moves so I think it could be a pretty decent signing for sure.
Stoke City quiz: Does the Bet365 Stadium have a higher or lower capacity than these 18 grounds?
This would be a very smart signing.
Stoke City’s main issue this season has been scoring goals, with Nick Powell the only one to hit double figures.
In fairness, Steven Fletcher is a good player and Tyrese Campbell’s injury was a major blow, but they still need at least one new attacker in the window.
So, Delap would be a very welcome addition for O’Neill. Of course, he is by no means the finished product but he is highly-rated at City and seems to have qualities to thrive in the Championship.
Finances are going to be an issue for the Potters in the summer, and they won’t be able to splash the cash.
Therefore, it’s about finding bargains and loans, with Delap fitting the bill. He is exactly the sort of signing they should be looking to make.
Signing a new forward in the summer transfer window needs to be a top priority for Michael O’Neill at Stoke City.
The Potters have struggled to score goals this season on a consistent basis and it’s telling that a midfielder in Nick Powell is the club’s top goalscorer.
Stoke for me need an injection of youthful exuberance next season with the Potters possessing a relatively ageing squad, so Delap could provide a new, dynamic solution up-front.
Granted, Stoke can’t pin all their hopes on the promising Man City starlet but he’s a player who looks like he’s ready for a spell in the EFL to help develop and progress his game, and he could get game-time under O’Neill at Stoke.
He’s been prolific at youth level and looks like he has the attributes to adapt to life in the Championship.