It has been revealed that a host of Premier League clubs have been eyeing up Espanyol striker Daniel Osvaldo. The relatively unknown striker has been scouted by several top-flight clubs including Manchester United, Tottenham, Everton and Fulham. The Argentine born, Italian national striker has impressed in La Liga this season, after an unhappy time in Serie A with Italian teams Lecce, Fiorentina and Bologna.
Several scouts made the trip to watch Espanyol’s 2-1 win against Athletic Bilbao, Osvaldo scoring one and creating another. The target man was bought by Espanyol for £4.5 million in 2010, after a successful loan spell, which saw him score 7 goals in 20 games. This season, the Italian has improved on last year’s tally, netting an impressive 11 goals in 20 appearances. His strength, pace, dribbling ability, and all-round finishing quality has attracted attention from teams looking to add to their striking depth.
Although the club slapped a hefty £18 million buy-out clause on him, reports suggest that Espanyol would do business for around £12 million, given their history as a ‘selling club’. But even at £12 million, he would cost more than the likes of very impressive strikers such as United’s Javier Hernández and Wigan’s Hugo Rodallega, and would definitely be a gamble purchase for any manager.
Despite this, the 25 year-old, still looks an attractive prospect, his age meaning that there is still a lot of pitch time left in him. His previous clubs have caused him to be viewed more as a Europe League rather than a potential Champions League player. But with time, he could really develop at the right club. Osvaldo prefers to operate as a lone front man, latching on to teasing through balls or even a tantalising cross from the wings. His ability with his head as well as his feet would see him likened to United’s Javier Hernández, never mind his pace and dribbling ability.
Should a move to England materialise, he will no doubt cause a mixed reception amongst the crowds, his birthday falling during the year Diego Maradona knocked England out of the World Cup – and he’s not afraid to remind people of it!