Who is Charlie Austin?

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Charlie Austin is a phenomenon. Last week the Burnley marksman became the fastest player to reach 20 goals in the English game’s history – reaching the haul just 17 games into the season. He is still currently outscoring both Messi and Ronaldo. It should come as no surprise that Liverpool have been linked with the striker.

Austin has been terrorising Championship and League 1 defenders for 3 and a half seasons now. Dangerous with both feet, quick across the ground, possessing lightning fast reactions and deadly in the air, Austin has the complete package you want from a goalscorer.

It’s worth remembering that Austin is just 23 and has only been playing professional football for 3 years. Before joining Swindon in 2009, Austin was a part time brickie playing for Poole Town (scoring 46 goals in 48 appearances). Since turning pro, Austin has scored 65 goals in 81 starts – a stunning return no matter the level.

From Poole to Swindon to Burnley, Austin has consistently scored lots and lots of goals with each move he’s made up the Football League. There is no reason to doubt that he’d be able to continue to do so in the Premier League. Considering his age and relative lack of experience, there is no reason to doubt that Charlie Austin still has a lot of improving to do as a player. And for a player currently outscoring the rest of Europe, that’s a frightening prospect.

Both fans and managers often like to turn their noses up at talk of purchasing a striker from the lower leagues. The striker is usually seen to be the star of the side and as such nothing other than a big name is deemed acceptable. But why late an almost certain big name of the future like Austin pass you by when he’s affordable now?

Arsenal’s current man up top (and French international), Olivier Giroud, was playing for Tours in France’s Ligue 2 as recently as 2010. Everton purchased their prolific goal snaffler Nikica Jelavic from Rangers with relatively little competition from other Premier League sides, although Liverpool apparently turned him down. The SPL is often considered to be a league of a worse standard than the Championship and as such the fear is that players who a successful north of the border won’t be able to make the step up in the Premier League. Yet as the case of these two strikers reveals, goal-scoring is an art that doesn’t go away, no matter the size of the stadium it’s performed in.

Joe Hall at Sabotage Times makes the case for Liverpool to sign this relatively unknown goalscoring machine in order to add depth to the team’s striking options. Do you think Charlie Austin can make it in the Premier League? Should the Reds take the gamble and pick him up in the upcoming transfer window?

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