19-year-old Jayden Reid made an immediate impact for Steve Spooner’s side.
His brace in Birmingham City U23’s 3-1 victory away to Hull City clinched a vital three points in the Professional Development League, ending a run of three straight defeats.
The Blues youngster has just returned from a three-month loan spell with League Two strugglers Barrow. His game time though limited by substitute appearances where he featured in 12 of their games.
The loan comes after Reid managed to make four appearances for the First Team towards the end of the 2019/2020 season. He is yet to feature under boss Aitor Karanka this time around.
With the First Team in pursuit of a striker, this would be a good opportunity to utilise the academy at least until a senior striker is bought into the club. Fellow Championship rivals QPR snapped up veteran Charlie Austin in the hope of goals to the side, of which he has delivered already scoring on his return debut on Tuesday night.
The January transfer window is mostly about opportunity though, and Blues can not rely on waiting for the availability of an established striker. It is a priority when Karanka’s side are sitting on just 17 goals, from their 23 games played this season.
Bringing in Reid to the matchday squad will at least provide a different option to the striker’s department. Lukas Jutkiewicz and Scott Hogan have managed only two each so far. The same as defenders Harlee Dean and Marc Roberts. If the club are to climb up the table and avoid a relegation battle, the goals need to come from the forwards first.
Recently Blues have operated a loan striker in the form of Jutkiewicz or Hogan so maybe the addition of Reid could change this, and switch to two upfront.
Whoever Blues add to their forward department, whether from inside the academy of the club or a new signing, I believe a change in formation would benefit the goal threat. 4-4-2 hasn’t been favoured by Karanka but it may be time to switch up. It’s difficult to see the progression in the team having more threat going forward if things stay the same with a solitary striker.
I think adding a player like Reid to the squad can give him a chance to impress for First team action, who will no doubt be hungry for more appearances to kick start his professional career. Perhaps not in the starting eleven, but in the matchday squad, he can be given that opportunity.