Why Siriki Dembele is worth a punt for Newcastle United
According to the Chronicle Live, Newcastle United have been credited with an interest in Peterborough United forward Siriki Dembele. Magpies boss Steve Bruce was in attendance during Peterborough’s 2-0 defeat against Crewe Alexandra over the weekend to keep an eye on the 24-year-old.
As per the report, Dembele’s impressive form in League One this season has put a number of clubs in the Championship and Premier League on red alert. Peterborough, though, remain reluctant to lose any other attacking player following the big-money sale of Ivan Toney in the summer.
Born in Ivory Coast, Siriki Dembele relocated with his family to London in search of better footballing opportunities. He eventually settled down north of the border in Scotland and spent time in the youth academies of Dundee United and Ayr United. The 24-year-old honed his skills at the Nike Football Academy before earning a professional contract with Grimsby Town.
Dembele scored only 4 goals in 39 appearances for fourth-tier outfit Grimsby before completing a move to Peterborough United in 2018. The versatile forward has since established himself as a quality young player in League One, accumulating 18 goals and 20 assists in 88 appearances for the Posh across all competitions.
The Ivorian’s stocks are currently soaring higher than ever following a stellar start to the 2020-21 campaign that has seen him register 5 goals and 3 assists from 11 league outings so far.
Dembele would add more variety to Newcastle’s attack
Callum Wilson has hit the ground running at Newcastle following his summer move from Bournemouth, with the England international bagging 6 goals in 8 league appearances for the Magpies so far. The 28-year-old’s arrival at Tyneside has undoubtedly handed a massive boost to an otherwise goal-shy Newcastle strike force that yielded only 38 goals last season.
Despite that, Steve Bruce has every reason to be concerned about the lacklustre form of some of the other strikers in his squad. Andy Carroll is yet to score in 25 PL outings since returning to Newcastle in the summer of 2019 while Joelinton has continued to underwhelm. The Brazilian has scored only twice in 45 league appearances for the Magpies, which certainly doesn’t strike the right chords.
With new signing Ryan Fraser yet to make a big impression and Dwight Gayle out of contract next summer, Newcastle need to reshape their striking options with one eye on the future. A potential move for Siriki Dembele, to that end, could well go a long way towards solving a few pressing concerns in front of goal for the Magpies.
Dembele has looked at his sparkling best in a centre-forward role at Peterborough but has also been utilised as a wide attacker on either side of the pitch. With Jacob Murphy out of contract next summer and Christian Atsu no longer in Bruce’s plans, the 24-year-old perfectly fits the bill as a utility squad option at St. James’ Park.
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Siriki Dembele has caught the eye with his creative and goalscoring pedigree in League One but it goes without saying that the difference in quality between the English third-tier and the Premier League is quite massive. However, it’s a jump many players have made in recent times, with Tottenham’s Dele Alli and Leicester’s James Justin being prime examples.
The 24-year-old has started to deliver on his potential and still has his best years ahead of him. Having said that, Newcastle playing a low-cost gamble on the Ivorian could be a shrewd piece of business in the winter market.