Gillingham are the latest side to be linked with Peterborough United striker Jonson Clarke-Harris, as reported by Kent Online, although it would come at a significant cost.
Clarke-Harris has been one of the most talked about players this window ever since his move to Bristol Rovers in the summer on deadline day fell through. As a result, the striker looks destined to leave Posh this January with plenty of clubs vying for his signature.
Having been the joint top-scorer in League One last season with 26 goals, it comes as no surprise to see plenty of clubs battling to gain Clarke-Harris’ services. Despite falling out of favour at Peterborough the Jamaican international has still managed six goals in 17 League One matches this season.
With his contract up in the summer it would come as a huge surprise if Posh were not to sell the 29-year-old this window given he could then just walk on a free as soon as the season closes.
Although his market value would’ve no doubt taken a hit given his contract situation, Clarke-Harris is still valued by Transfermarkt at €900,000. That number may be somewhat of an overestimation but Peterborough’s Director of Football Barry Fry recently came out saying the club would not sell the striker for ‘peanuts’, so the figure could be in the right ball park.
It is obvious where the current problems lie for the Gills, and that is in their attacking ranks. Stephen Clemence’s side have scored just 21 goals all season, the lowest in the league, yet do find themselves in 10th place.
Now just a singular point off of the play-off positions, Clemence will no doubt be eyeing a move further up the table prior to the end of the season however they are currently in an ultra-competitive chasing pack.
If Gillingham have ambitions of making the play-offs this year then they simply must improve in front of goal. A marquee signing up top would do just that and could take them to the next level.
Clarke-Harris could be out of reach given his price tag, however Peterborough would be far happier to sell to a League Two side rather than a League One rival. It could become a bidding war for the striker, one in which Gillingham may take part in given their position currently. Though it is uncertain if they afford both the 29-year-old’s price tag as well as wage.
It would certainly be a swoop if Gillingham were able to complete the signing of Clarke-Harris although it does seem somewhat unrealistic. The Gills badly need a focal point and their current form in front of goal exemplifies that.
There are plenty other options in which the club could pursue for a cheaper price however Clarke-Harris looks the premier pick of the bunch at the minute. If League One clubs begin to get their big money out, then Gillingham may struggle in a bidding war and it’ll be interesting to see how the situation pans out.