It’s no surprise that a striker is a “big priority” for Gary O’Neil and Wolves as we approach the final stretch of the January transfer window. They’ve already offloaded two of their options in that department on loan this month, with Fabio Silva joining Rangers and Sasa Kalajdzic heading back to Germany with Eintracht Frankfurt.
Wolves have reportedly made an offer to sign PSG forward Hugo Ekitike on loan with an option to buy, but they’ve failed to make a decisive breakthrough on that one just yet, and there’s also been interest in Danny Ings at West Ham, with talks taking place over a temporary move.
A third candidate is Southampton striker Che Adams, who’s out of contract at the end of the current season. Wolves have contacted Southampton to gauge his availability, and according to a fresh update, the Scotsman may be the prime candidate to move to Molineux.
Adams the lead option for Wolves move
Speaking to GiveMeSport, transfer insider Dean Jones provided an update on Wolves’ striker targets. He says the club have to carefully consider the finances involved with each move, and from that standpoint, Adams stands out as the likeliest addition.
Jones said: “Ekitike has been on Wolves’ radar because he has more versatility than other forwards mentioned. We also have to consider the financials around them bringing in players. Ings is on such hefty personal terms at West Ham that it makes me wonder if it genuinely becomes possible, and Adams might just be a bit more suitable at this specific moment. I think that’s what they are trying to understand right now. They can only really do a loan deal.”
“Amazing” Adams can ease burden on Hwang
Prior to Saturday’s game against Swansea City, Adams had scored eight goals and provided two assists in 24 Championship appearances, which sounds decent without being spectacular. However, it’s important to place those numbers in the context of his limited minutes – he’s only started 12 games, and ranks seventh in the league for non-penalty goals per 90 minutes (0.54).
It’s all the more impressive that he’s putting up those numbers when he isn’t able to get into a rhythm, and when he had to deal with the disappointment of being denied a Premier League move last summer (Everton made a £12m bid for his services, but it was rejected by Southampton). Manager Russell Martin says his form this season is “amazing” in those circumstances.
Adams has only scored 25 goals in 124 games in the top flight, under-performing relative to his xG and missing 45 big chances, but Southampton will have to sell him on the cheap if they want to bank any sort of fee ahead of the expiry of his deal, and that limits the risk for Wolves. He can take some of the pressure off ten-goal Hwang Hee-chan, with the South Korean still doing the majority of the scoring.
Wolves are operating under the constraints of the league’s Profit and Sustainability Rules, and they clearly need a striker, so there’s a limit to how picky they can be.