A January signing at Vicarage Road, M’baye Niang came from AC Milan on loan with a reputation of high promise but was perhaps another player that was going to have all the ingredients to be a top player but for one reason or another he would never fulfil that potential. With over 10 appearances to his name Watford fans have had the chance to make a verdict on the impact the Frenchman has made since joining, knowing full well the club have the option to make his services a permanent one in the summer for roughly £14 million. So based on what we’ve seen so far, should the club make that move?
In my opinion the club should activate that clause. Despite that I think fans would agree with me that his performances don’t justify a £14 million price tag. Niang has been too inconsistent and it’s clear to see why he has been shipped out on loan after suffering from poor form. What is clear to see is that he has tremendous ability, he has all the physical capabilities nailed down at 22 years old, pace, power and strength mean Niang is a ready made asset. In terms of his technical abilities I also feel he is possibly underrated in this sense. If you look back at his assists in the West Brom and Burnley’s game, his vision and execution, being able to use both feet means he’s not just another one dimensional winger, he’s got plenty of ability in more than one department. So in terms of Niang’s potential, he has all the attributes to be a top player which is why I’m swaying to the idea that the club should sign him permanently.
The risks with the signing would be if Niang were to continue providing a lack of genuine input from his performances which wouldn’t justify the transfer fee. It’s clear to see why he isn’t doing more than he should. His decision making is not cutthroat enough and his lack of relentlessness that the top players have is why he finds himself at Vicarage Road rather than the San Siro. That’s the best way of describing Niang, he is to sporadic with his contributions and often looks like he doesn’t have the endurance to constantly cause oppositions problems, just in bits and pieces. Could that improve with time? That is where the hope lies, if they can then I have no doubt it’s worth investing.
After winning in his first two games, Niang has only seen 3 wins in 12 since. Despite seemingly having a good connection with Mazzarri, the club have suffered with a host of poor performances. You could use the excuse it’s not been easy for him to make such an impact in such a disjointed and disorganised team, I think while that’s probably not that valid, we could see the best out of Niang hopefully under a new manager hopefully surrounded by a more resilient bunch of players. The 22 year old isn’t the type of character to lead on the pitch and really take the initiative, another reason why a deal should be doubtful but he is still a match winner and a real talent that could be exactly what the Hornets need. In Watford’s situation they are not going to be able to sign the ready made proven talents out there without excessively breaking the bank, if they are to try and improve year on year players need to be signed with the potential to be worth more than they were signed for and that is what Niang is. At a young age and with bags of footballing ability he is the type of player Watford need in my opinion, we can’t expect him to be superb for 38 games a season but we can expect a key player who can produce match winning moments and be a leading light for an aspiring top half club.
With the staggering money received for Odion Ighalo, buying Niang permanently would be good business. In effect the Frenchman and Tom Cleverley would have been bought for the same price as the sale of Ighalo. £14 million is still no laughing matter even in today’s market, it would be a record transfer however I do believe because of the way the market is going, this would be a worthy investment and Niang could become a hit at Vicarage Road.
What do you think Watford fans, let us know in the comments below!