Darren Bent was torn over whether Newcastle United should sign Southampton attacker Charlie Austin.
Sky Sports reported on Thursday that the Magpies inquired about the Saints forward a few weeks ago and that Steve Bruce was currently weighing up whether to make a move.
Bent shared that he believes Austin is capable of scoring goals when given an extending run in the team, but questioned whether the attacker was able to stay fit given his injury record.
“It’s a tough one, if you could guarantee that he could at least play half a season, if not three-quarters of the season then you could probably take a risk on him as if he does play, he does score goals to be fair to Charlie Austin,” said Bent on talkSPORT (17:57, Thursday, July 25th).
“On an extended run, he does score a lot of goals.
“But you do worry about injuries and things like that, but they need bodies through the door Newcastle, they need a striker who is going to score goals, and if he can stay fit, I think he can do that.”
Bent is spot on about Newcastle needing to sign a striker, despite Joelinton being recruited this summer, as they no longer have Ayoze Perez or Salomon Rondon to call upon. Perez, who scored 13 goals, and Rondon, who scored 12 goals, led the Magpies’ scoring charts last season and Joelinton can’t be expected to score 25 goals in his debut season at St James Park to cover the fact both are no longer on the books (Source: BBC). However, it’s hard to see why Bent thinks Austin is capable of scoring goals for the Magpies if signed, as even when you don’t take injuries into account, his record isn’t overly convincing. The 30-year-old has scored 34 goals in 106 Premier League outings, which is okay, but considering he managed to grab only two goals in 25 league outings in his latest campaign, it’s hard to be too inspired by the idea of him. After all Austin averaged a goal every 490 minutes in the league in his 2018/19 campaign, and that hardly screams prolific (Source: Transfermarkt).