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…
New Stoke City manager Michael O’Neill is not hanging about as he looks to strengthen his side and pull away from the Championship relegation zone, with Aberdeen striker Sam Cosgrove a target, according to a report in The Scottish Sun.
Cosgrove has been at the Dons since January 2018 having previously spent time at Wigan and Carlisle United, plus loan spells at Barrow, Chorley and North Ferriby United.
This season Cosgrove has really upped his game with 16 goals already in 20 appearances in the SPFL, League Cup and Europa League combined.
So is Cosgrove needed at the Potters and would he be a good addition at the bet365 Stadium?
“He’d be a decent signing but I’m not sure he’s what they need.
“Stoke have a lot of strikers that just don’t score enough and despite his record in Scotland, there has to be doubts as to whether Cogrove can cut it in the Championship.
“Firstly, you have to say that many of his goals have been penalties and then you worry about whether he has the pace and mobility to succeed at this level.
“He can certainly do a job with his physicality but Stoke already have Sam Vokes who is a target man and they’re going to struggle to sell him in January.
“Whilst I agree that a striker is needed in the New Year, I think they should be going for a different type of player and preferably one that’s proven in England.”
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“I don’t feel like this is a signing that Stoke really need at this point in time, with the Potters being well stocked in forward areas, it would only add to the selection headache that already occupies Michael O’Neill.
“Cosgrove would obviously add an extra goal threat to proceedings for the Championship outfit, however I believe they should focus on strengthening other key areas of the team.
“I think they have enough firepower at the time of writing, as was shown during their win over Barnsley, they are capable of getting goals from all areas of the field, with the likes of Sam Clucas and Tom Ince likely to contribute in the coming weeks and months.
“The only way I can see the Potters making a move for Cosgrove is if they manage to move on the likes of Mame Biram Diouf, with the Senegalese striker’s wages taking up a good chunk of the playing budget.”
Is Sam Cosgrove what is needed at the Potters?
“Stoke definitely need some fresh blood through the door in January with Michael O’Neill guaranteed to be looking to put his own stamp on the squad, and Cosgrove seems like a sensible addition given his goal-scoring record.
“It makes sense for the Potters to add players who have been in good form during the first half of the season, as this could help inject fresh confidence into the squad, and Cosgrove fits this bill given his goals so far this term.
“I do feel that Stoke need to offload some players before they start recruiting, and this will probably be O’Neill’s priority after the turn of the year, but Cosgrove would be a good signing once a few players have been shifted.
“It would be a sensible and cost-effective addition as Stoke know they would be getting a physical and hard-working player who looks capable of causing problems for Championship defences.”