Brentford have announced the signing Greek international striker Nikos Karelis who was a free agent after leaving Genk in the summer. The news will come as a boost after the deadline week frustrations, which saw Neal Maupay leave for Brighton and the club fail in its attempt to agree terms with two possible replacements.
The opening four games of the season, despite Ollie Watkins finding the net on two occasions, had raised alarm bells, as without a natural first-choice centre forward, the side looked unbalanced. Nikos Karelis’ arrival therefore gives the squad a big boost and allows our forwards to revert to playing in their strongest postitions. Turning Ollie into an out and out centre-forward would have taken time you simply don’t get in this league and, as we have seen, I am sure he’ll continue to score wherever he plays.
Marcus Forss will also retain an important role this campaign, coming off the bench rather than starting perhaps, but he is another player with great potential and one the club will want to protect as he gets more and more first-team game time.
Nikos Karelis has signed a one year deal, with the club having an option to extend that depending on his form at Brentford this season, and of course we hope he can emerge as a real threat in front of goal at Championship level. He certainly seems to have the right calibre.
Thomas Frank, Brentford FC Head Coach, said: “Nikos is a player that will reinforce our options in attacking areas. We were looking for an extra player before the transfer deadline earlier this month and now we have a very good addition. Nikos hasn’t played as much football as he would have liked in the past two or three years, and that is one of the reasons we were able to get a player of his calibre into the Club.”
“Earlier in his career he showed everyone what he was capable of, but injuries have held him back a bit. He is fit now and while he may take a while to be 100 per cent ready to start in the Championship, I know he will have an impact. He is a striker that suits the way we want to play. He can link with the midfield and makes intelligent runs on and off the ball to help the attack. He is also very good out of possession and will help our pressing game. I look forward to welcoming him to the squad.”