Charlton Athletic are enjoying their first season back in the Championship, and they’ve found a new hero in Macauley Bonne.
Lee Bowyer has earned a reputation as one of England’s best up and coming managers.
His heroics in bringing Charlton back into the Championship last season was hailed by fans, and his start to this season has been equally as good.
They started the campaign in fine-form and found themselves in the play-offs places after the first few games.
But an injury to their star man Lyle Taylor in September saw their form drop off.
They took some time in adapting to life without Taylor, but they replaced his goals with those of Macaulay Bonne.
Bonne, 24, scored his fifth goal of the season against West Brom at the weekend, equalling the record that Taylor had managed before his injury.
Bowyer brought Bonne to the club from Leyton Orient in the summer for a fee rumoured to be £200,000 and so far it’s proving a shrewd piece of business from Bowyer.
A goal at The Hawthorns was Bonne’s fourth in as many games for the Addicks, who find themselves 9th in the Championship – two points off of Bristol City in 6th.
In the eight games since Taylor’s absence, Charlton have managed just two wins and as many draws.
Bowyer insisted that the Montserrat striker wasn’t the ‘be all and end all’ of his side, but the fact that they’ve slowed down in his absence is undeniable.
Nevertheless, Bonne has made the step-up for Charlton and with Taylor’s expected return next month, it’ll give Bowyer a slight selection headache in the attacking department.
There’s goals in the side from elsewhere though – Chelsea-loanee Conor Gallagher also has five for the season, and West Brom loanee Jonathan Leko has bagged himself a couple too.
Has Macauley Bonne been the 'bargain of the season' so far?
Bonne though has shown his all-round game since breaking into the first-team.
He’s got aerial threat, pace and power and a fine finish on top of that, but that shouldn’t come as a surprise to football fans given his record at Orient last season.
Bonne netted 23 goals last season to help the O’s to the National League title, and 22 the season before.
Bowyer saw the potential in the 24-year-old and was keen to snap him up, and he didn’t have to break the bank to do so.
He’s arguably been one of the signings of the season so far, let alone the bargain of the season, and he along with Taylor could well be the pair that fire Charlton to an unprecedented play-off push in the first season back in the second-tier.