I have to say that I find it incredible that a Premier League club have not snapped-up QPR striker Charlie Austin by now.
The Hoops are reported to want £15million for the prolific front man, which by today’s standards is fair in anybody’s book.
Compared to some of the deals that have already taken place and some mooted deals, £15million for Austin looks like a bargain.
His signing seems like a no-brainer for any self-respecting football club in the Premier League, yet nobody seems to be willing to meet his valuation.
I do not think I have seen a player linked with moves to so many clubs in the Premier League. Austin’s list of potential suitors is like petition. Chelsea, Tottenham, Everton, West Ham, Bournemouth, Newcastle (take a breather) Crystal Palace, Leicester and now West Brom have all been linked with Austin.
That is nearly half the Premier League clubs being linked with one player, yet he is still at QPR in the second tier of English football.
I have heard people complain that Charlie Austin does not give you anything other than goals. Well there may be exaggerating slightly, but if you do not score goals you do not win games and trophies it is as simple as that really.
Every Premier League club seems to be looking for a prolific striker and not one is prepared to sign Austin, which to me makes no sense.
Charlie Austin has been prolific in every league he has played and he has played in most English leagues during his five year professional career. He does miss chances, but his head never drops and that is what makes him a good striker.
If a team creates chances for Austin he will score bags full of goals and he proved that last season in a very poor QPR side that finished bottom of the Premier League. If he was in a decent team with a good supply he would once again probably be pushing the 20-goal mark in the Premier League.
Maybe clubs are put off by the fact that he arrived in the top-flight at a relatively late stage of his career. The striker turned 26 last month, but he still has plenty of goals and time left in him at the top level.
He does not depend on pace, but his predatory instincts and his physicality to get the better of defenders and he has the ability to cause most defences problems.
Everton have been installed as favourites to sign the striker at odds of 3/1 this summer, with Bournemouth at odds of 7/2 and Crystal Palace odds of 4/1 to secure the strikers signature before the transfer window shuts.
I have no doubt he would be a great signing for all three of those clubs. Everton are likely to have a full wallet in the near future, with young centre-back John Stones looking set for a big money move to Chelsea.
However, it seems he would be unlikely to be first choice striker at Goodison Park, with Romelu Lukaku already occupying the lone striker role, and Roberto Martinez not accustomed to changing his tactics.
Bournemouth failed to score in their first two Premier League games, but last time out defeated West Ham 4-3 at the Boleyn Ground with striker Callum Wilson scoring a hat-trick. Cherries boss Eddie Howe has started the season with two up front, so he could partner Wilson.
Crystal Palace looks like the most obvious move at the moment. The Eagles create lots of chances and play attacking football, so Austin seems ideal to spearhead their attack.
Palace does have a plethora of strikers, but both Dwight Gayle and Glenn Murray are being linked with moves away from Selhurst Park. Palace also brought in Connor Wickham from Sunderland earlier this summer, so a new striker may not be Alan Pardew’s priority in the next week.
It will be a major surprise to me if Charlie Austin is still a Championship player after next Tuesday and deadline day. QPR fans will no doubt be happy if Austin stays, but the strikers goalscoring talents are wasted in the second tier and surely a top-flight club will stump up the money to sign him before the 5pm deadline on 1st September.
Will a Premier League club sign Charlie Austin before the transfer window shuts?