He scored on his debut in the Premier League, netting once in a 2-0 win against Swansea (although Ashley Williams did really screw up a simple clearance) and during his three seasons at Villa Park, Christian Benteke was the soul source of entertainment and hope, as Aston Villa never made it past 15th in the table and amassed just 10 wins every single year.
He netted 49 goals during his stay, never scoring less than 10 in a single campaign, but his team always struggled, and he could go weeks without scoring.
The Belgian striker uses his size and strength to get past defenders, as he’s not the fastest guy on the pitch and he’s not a skiller, although he can shake a center-back here and there and slot the ball into the upper ninety. As strikers go, Benteke is a nice prize, but his health and consistency have been suspect in the last two years; he tore his Achilles tendon in April 2014 and has missed time throughout the last two years due to other physical maladies.
Benteke is a talented striker, but his inconsistency make his value of £32.5m a bit ridiculous; sure, 59 goals in 143 games is a nice tally, but who knows how long this striker can perform. In his first season at Liverpool, Benteke scored 9 league goals, but he missed 9 league games; still not bad, but when you put a microscope to his stats, you see short peaks of brilliance but deep valleys of little production as well.
Last year Benteke didn’t score a single goal, didn’t even nutmeg someone’s grandma in a 3-month span between December 30th and March 6th, in which he played in 13 games!
Crystal Palace and West Ham are interested in taking the striker off Jürgen Klopp’s hands, as Benteke isn’t a great fit for the German’s speedy counter attacks. The current offer of £31.5m by Crystal Palace is what Liverpool are asking for, as they got him for £32.5m, but it’s a big question whether Benteke can pick up his old form.
Maybe he’s not well-suited to the Prem, and after a few years he’s lost his spark and defenses are starting to figure him out.
Maybe he’s struggled in the last two calendar years because of his health.
Maybe he’s on the wrong team, in the wrong offensive structure.
Maybe Crystal Palace aren’t lunatics for throwing more than £30m Liverpool’s way for an inconsistent, relatively one-dimensional striker, who at times can produce amazing football. #scenes
Maybe West Ham will ramp up the bidding.
So far, there have been a lot of ‘maybe’s in Benteke’s Premiership career; maybe he’ll score, maybe we’ll win, maybe he’ll get healthy soon.
It’s time the Belgian finds something a little more definite than that; maybe, a new club will do the trick.