Why Hull City should reignite their interest in Jonson Clarke-Harris
With Grant McCann taking over the reins from Nigel Adkins prior to the start of the ongoing campaign, a deal to acquire the services of Jonson Clarke-Harris never really materialized.
The Tigers eventually went on to bring in Tom Eaves on a free transfer from Gillingham while Josh Magennis also came through the door at the KCOM Stadium from relegated outfit Bolton Wanderers.
Hull City also signed Hungarian international striker Norbert Balogh, who joined the Tigers in mid-September on a short-term deal as a free agent, following his release from Italian club Palermo in the summer. Nouha Dicko, on the other hand, was loaned out to Dutch club Vitesse Arnhem.
To that end, though, McCann has every reason to be disappointed with how his summer recruits, especially the strikers, have fared so far in the Championship. Eaves and Magennis have only shared 4 goals while Balogh’s substitute cameo against Nottingham Forest in October remains his only first-team involvement for the Tigers till date.
Much of the goalscoring burden has once again been shouldered by the prolific wide attacking duo of Jarrod Bowen and Kamil Grosicki. Bowen is currently the top scorer with 9 goals in the Championship while the Pole has also chipped in with 4 goals and 3 assists so far.
Hull City currently sit 12th in the standings, six points adrift of the playoff spots. Returns of 23 goals in 16 games look pretty decent on paper but McCann needs a prolific striker to rack up the goals week in, week out.
Indeed, the likes of Balogh, Eaves and Magennis have failed to live up to the expectations in East Yorkshire and Hull City might be forced to go back in the market for a new striker when the transfer window reopens in January.
To that end, reigniting interest in Bristol Rovers’ hitman Jonson Clarke-Harris could potentially be a masterstroke from Grant McCann. A youth exponent of Coventry City, the 25-year-old was a regular fixture for Rotherham United during their days in the Championship.
Notwithstanding the fact that he managed meagre returns of 9 goals in 57 appearances for the Millers in the second-tier earlier in his career, the striker’s recent resurgence in the League One should prompt Hull City to offer him a return.
The Leicester-born forward, who netted 11 goals in 16 League One outings for Bristol Rovers in the second half of the previous campaign, has managed to rack up 7 goals in 10 league appearances so far this season.
Jonson Clarke-Harris has not featured for Bristol Rovers for over a month due to a calf strain which he had picked up late in September but he has returned to action with the development side.
With that in mind, Hull City should once again start keeping tabs on the League One star ahead of the January transfer window and if he manages to hit the ground running, the Tigers should not hesitate to put an official offer on the table to acquire his services.
Agreed, the 25-year-old’s past failures in the Championship makes him a risky proposition but his impressive returns in the League One do suggest an upturn in form.
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There isn’t a lot to suggest that Jonson Clarke-Harris would be a massive upgrade on Eaves and Magennis but he is certainly head and shoulders above the Hull City duo when it comes to recent goalscoring form.
All in all, Hull City reigniting interest in Jonson Clarke-Harris could help them achieve a better scoring record in the second half of the campaign.