As we wait for the club to make their first move in the transfer market, there isn’t really any indication as to what our strategy will be this summer.
Garry Monk’s attitude to loan players last season suggested that when we do bring in players, they will be permanent moves rather than coming in on a temporary basis.
Whether that approach has had to change, it is not clear, although it is noticeable that a lot of the players we have been linked with in recent weeks are either available on a free transfer or on loan.
There are justifiable misgivings in pursuing more loan deals after the failures of last summer, but I think the manager will have only one question on his mind when looking to recruit new players: can they improve the team?
One of the latest rumours (from the Daily Mail so do take this with a large pinch of salt) is that we will look to make an offer for Chelsea’s Kasey Palmer.
We are looking for an attacking central midfield player so at least on that front, an approach for the 21-year-old does look like something that the club would consider.
On top of that, he has spent the last two seasons on loan in the Championship, during spells with Huddersfield and Derby County, so he does have the experience of playing in the division.
However, my biggest concern would be his fitness. He performed well at the Terriers in the 2016/17 season before picking up a serious Achilles Tendon injury. When he returned to the John Smith’s Stadium for a second spell last campaign, he was again struck down with a lengthy hamstring problem that forced him to cut his loan short.
The second half of last season was spent at Derby, and his lack of starts (2 in 16 appearances) does raise the question whether he is capable of delivering the types of performances we would need of him as an integral first-team player.
In terms of statistics, six goals and four assists in 37 Championship appearances is a decent record, although they are hardly numbers to suggest that we would improve much on the paltry 38 goals we scored in the league last term.
If Monk and his team feel he is the right man for the job then I’m inclined to trust him on this, but if we are going to commit to a season-long loan deal, I would need more convincing that he can offer us the type of creativity we are looking for in the final third of the pitch.