Former West Brom forward Kevin Phillips has urged the club to keep their hands on January rookie Mbaye Diagne if the Baggies are relegated from the Premier League.
The Senegalese striker, 29, is currently loaned by Galatasaray until the end of the season.
He scored 11 times in the first half of the campaign for the Turkish side before scoring his first goal for West Brom in the 1-1 draw with Manchester United on Valentine’s Day.
From the assessment of his five outings, it’s clear that Diange is still acclimating to the English, but supporters still hope he can be a vital cog in their quest for survival.
Sam Allardyce’s side are currently 19th in the table, around 11 points safe. With just 13 games to go, it will take a mammoth effort for the Hawthorns outfit to avoid the downfall, but even if they don’t, Phillips said the club should do what they can to tie Diagne to a deal. permanent.
“From what I’ve seen so far he hasn’t turned it on, but there is definitely a player there from what I can see,” he said. West Brom News.
“When you have a player on your side like that, it’s pretty clear how you have to play to play with their strengths.
“He did well and I think he’s improving. Is he going to be able to do enough to keep them in the league?
“I don’t think so, but if they come down, maybe they could keep him there for next season to try and help them get up. In the championship, he would be a big handful.
“I’ve seen some positive signs from him, let’s put it that way and I think the goal will help him too.”
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Lots of positives
Phillips, who has scored 46 goals in 81 games for the Baggies between 2006 and 2008, highlighted the good aspects of the game of Diagne.
“It’s a handful,” added the 47-year-old. “He took his goal very well (against Manchester United) and I think you saw him in the previous game (against Tottenham) where he turned down a couple.
“The good thing is he looks strong, powerful, and you can play up to him. He holds the ball, he is not the fastest player in the world but he works his socks.
Diagne’s loan contract, the sixth of his career, expires at the end of June.