West Bromwich Albion boss Sam Allardyce has suggested that a permanent move for Galatasaray loanee Mbaye Diagne is out of reach, handing a boost to chasing clubs Brighton, Crystal Palace, and Watford.
The 29-year-old joined Albion on loan in January but despite impressing he was unable to fire the Midlands club to survival, with the Baggies’ relegation back to the Championship now confirmed.
West Brom’s option to buy Diagne was thought to hinge on their Premier League survival and it seems there are multiple English clubs now looking to capitalise.
Sky Sports have reported that Brighton, Palace, and Watford are all keen on the striker, with the Hornets putting him on their list of summer targets ahead of their return to the top flight.
All three clubs have been handed a further boost in their pursuit of Diagne as, speaking to the Express and Star, Allardyce has indicated that permanent deals for him and fellow loan signing Okay Yokuslu were out of reach.
He explained: “The reason Okay and Mbaye came here is to show they can play in the Premier League.
“Why else would you come? Why would you leave Galatasaray as leading goalscorer, or a side that isn’t struggling against relegation in Spain?
“Why would you come to the Premier League, other than to make an impression, to say here I am, look at me. Come and get me.
“That would hopefully have been us had we stayed up. (But now) we couldn’t afford them. We have to go to Championship wages now so those players are very difficult to afford.”
Football Insider has reported that it could cost just £8 million to sign Diagne this summer.
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Allardyce seems to be ruling West Brom out of the running for Diagne, which is clearly a boost for the other clubs keen on the 29-year-old.
Though he didn’t score hatfuls of goals, the Senegal international certainly showed he had the quality to cut in the top flight, so it’s no surprise that there are other sides interested.
For £8 million, the striker could be a fantastic addition – particularly for the Hornets as they prepare for their return to the Premier League.