Huddersfield Town have broken their transfer record for Montpellier’s Steve Mounie on a four-year deal, with the fee reportedly €13m (£11.4m) for the 22-year-old striker.
Mounie is a Benin international who carries dual French nationality, meaning he doesn’t require a work permit – two words that will make any Football Manager fan want to headbutt a wall.
Last season was Mounie’s first full season for Montpellier, where he managed 14 goals in 32 games.
“He has real physical attributes that should be perfect for the Premier League.
“We have met and I know he is a great character.
“At just 22 years old, he is only going to improve too. Given what he is already capable of, that is very exciting.”
Huddersfield head coach David Wagner
Mounie represents the third time that Huddersfield have broken their transfer record already this summer. Laurent Depoitre signed from Porto for £3.5m before Aaaron Mooy arrived from Man City for £8m.
Huddersfield have now signed two target men this summer. The fees for the two of them would suggest Mounie to be first choice, and his stats suggest he could be vital for The Terriers.
Steve Mounié – Montpellier 16/17
More people on Twitter should be talking about this guy. Outstanding season from the Beninese. Only 22. pic.twitter.com/FxVGTpFumk
— La Haine (@KozielloEN) June 16, 2017
A big, physical player up top is clearly the plan for Wagner, and the Benin international fits the bill perfectly, too, winning more aerial duels than anyone in France last season.
His 8.4 won a game puts him comfortably three duels won ahead of the next nearest striker in Ligue 1, and he should only improve over the next few years.
293 – Steve Mounie won 293 aerials in L1 2016/17, best tally in a single Ligue 1 season since 2006/07. Terrier. pic.twitter.com/qOrigRa1Eh
— OptaJean (@OptaJean) July 5, 2017
The only drawback right now is that he has just one top flight season under his belt, although that season did come in a side battling relegation.
Having a striker who’s experienced in a struggling side can only be a good thing. In contrast, Middlesbrough signed Alvaro Negredo a year ago, and he didn’t look suited to that particular challenge.
He’s young, he can score goals, and he’s a physical presence; Mounie could be a steal at just under £12m.