Luton Town look set to sign forward Isaac Vassell on loan from Birmingham City, according to respected journalist Alan Nixon.
Nixon claims that Birmingham are hoping to sign a new striker and that if that happens before the end of the transfer window, the Blues will loan Vassell out, with his former club Luton at the front of the queue to sign him.
The 25-year-old scored 14 goals for Luton in 2016/17 before moving to Birmingham, but has so far failed to make an impact in the Championship and has struggled with injury problems throughout his time at St Andrew’s.
In the latest FLW Six Pointer, we take a look at Vassell’s situation in more detail.
Firstly, would Vassell be a good signing for Luton Town?
“I think this would be a decent signing for Luton.
“Even though he’s struggled to make an impact for Birmingham over the past couple of season, Vassell is a decent player and Luton fans know just how good he can be on his day.
“Vassell will be determined to prove himself in the Championship and I think he’s capable of scoring goals at this level given a proper chance.
“Luton don’t have a huge budget so they need to be smart with their recruitment and I think a loan deal for Vassell would be a smart move.”
Are there any cons to Luton signings Vassell?
“I think Vassell would be a decent signing for Luton but it’s a signing that would have to be considered somewhat of a risk, for a couple of reasons.
“First of all, he doesn’t have a great deal of experience in the Championship and has struggled to make an impact in the second tier in his two seasons with Birmingham, although it’s worth noting that he has struggled with injury problems throughout his time at St Andrew’s.
“The other concern is his fitness. He only returned from a long-term knee injury in January and only managed two starts in 14 appearances for Birmingham last season, so he may struggle to cope with the physical demands of the Championship again.
“Luton will be hoping to survive relegation next season and it’s vital that they get off to a good start, so starting with Vassell up front would have to be considered a bit of a risk.”
Would Luton be a good move for Vassell?
“I think this would be a great move for Vassell.
“The striker will be determined to prove that he’s good enough for the Championship and what better place to do that than at a club that he already knows well and has a good relationship with the fans.
“He’s struggled to make an impact at Birmingham over the past couple of seasons, but a switch to Kenilworth Road would provide him with the perfect opportunity to get his career back on track.”
Why haven’t things worked out for Vassell at Birmingham?
“Vassell got off to a shaky start at St Andrew’s, but scored the winner in a game against Sheffield Wednesday and was just starting to enjoy a run of matches in the starting XI under Steve Cotterill when he suffered a season-ending knee ligament injury in October 2017.
“He suffered another injury setback in his recovery and when he eventually returned under Garry Monk in January this year, he found himself behind Che Adams and Lukas Jutkiewicz in the pecking order.
“He went on to make just two league starts in 14 appearances and failed to score a single goal.”
Could Birmingham come to regret letting him go?
“I think that would depend entirely on how well Vassell does for Luton and who Birmingham bring in to replace him.
“The Blues need at least one new striker to rival Lukas Jutkiewicz and if they don’t manage to bring one in before the end of the transfer window, then there’s no way they’d allow Vassell to leave the club this summer.
“With that said, I don’t think Pep Clotet would be prepared to sell him unless he already had a replacement in mind, so it seems as though he’s got a couple of transfer targets lined up.
“If Vassell is able to score goals for Luton in the Championship next season and Birmingham struggle to score goals, then it might be that the Blues come to regret letting him go.
“It’s not as if would be a permanent transfer though, so if anything I think Birmingham will be hoping for Vassell to do well at Luton and they could always insert an option to re-call him from his loan if he does well.”
How will this signing go down with Luton fans?
“On the whole, I think Luton fans would be very pleased if the club were able to bring Vassell back on loan.
“He was a key player for the Hatters during his only season at the club in 2016/17 and I’m sure fans would be all too pleased to see him back at Kenilworth Road.
“I’m sure there are some Luton fans out there who will question whether Vassell is good enough to succeed in the Championship given his past couple of seasons with Birmingham.
“However, they will all know how good he can be on his day and I imagine the majority of supporters at Kenilworth Road would be very pleased if he were to return to the club.”