Lets be honest, it’s been a frustrating 12 months for Stoke City striker, Joselu Mato.
Having seen his chances come few and far, Joselu looks set to be calling time on his Stoke City career according to The Telegraph.
They have today reported that should Stoke City get a striker through the doors, that will eventually pave the way for him to leave the club.
The Spaniard joined Stoke just over 12 months ago from Hannover 96 in Germany, for a fee of £5.75 million.
He made his Stoke City debut last August, where Stoke were trailing 2-0 to Spurs at the time. Joselu replaced Walters after 59 minutes, and looked to be a real fan favourite at Stoke when his Cruyff-like turn stunned Toby Alderweireld, winning Stoke a penalty, and subsequently sparking a revival on the day.
So it would become frustrating for not only Joselu, but Stoke City fans in general that it took until the 28th December for the striker to get his first Premier League goal, pulling Stoke level on the day at Everton, a game which Stoke would go on to dramatically win late on.
Throughout the rest of the Premier League campaign, Joselu only managed to grab three more goals (Norwich, Bournemouth, Watford) leaving him with a total of four league goals in a season where he never really managed to cement a place in the first team.
There is absolutely no doubting Joselu as a finisher in front of goal. Having seen him first hand in the warm-ups, and even in the game itself, I, like many other Stoke fans will vouch for his ability in front of goal, however, there’s one thing that’s halting Joselu as a Premier League striker, and that is pace.
That’s not to say pace is essential to be successful in the Premier League, but the fact that Hughes has chased Saido Berahino, and previously Michy Batshuayi signals that he wants a dynamic forward, and that’s where Joselu’s game falls down.
At 26 years old, Joselu will feel like his best years are coming up, and that perhaps may mean that he needs to move in order to allow him to fully unload his potential, instead of sitting on the bench at Stoke.
The early signs were there for Joselu, as he has not been named in any of the opening two Premier League squads, and having only made last nights substitute’s bench for the trip to Stevenage, perhaps that’s a message from Mark Hughes.
There’s one thing that’s for sure, Joselu has been a wonderful character within the club. He is a lively character, and one I’m sure would flourish in a side where he is the main striker, and not regularly rotated.