Scout Report: Simeon Jackson
We need a striker. Ian Holloway might say otherwise, but we need a striker. Preferably one with pace. A striker who plays on the shoulder of the last defender. A striker who would make the most of the one-on-one situations our midfield would create.
Watching the Seasiders this season, you get the sense that that type of striker, someone who would get close to or above 20 goals for the season might just be the difference between comfortably avoiding the drop and having a real shot at making the playoffs.
Yes, Ben Burgess already has four goals to his name, and when fit, we have a nice stable of forwards to select from. However, none of them possess that certain je ne sais quoi... that little something extra.
Had we managed to sign DJ Campbell over the summer, then perhaps our start to the season would have been even better still, who knows.
With our failure to sign the hitman, we have to turn our attentions elsewhere, and one player that has certainly caught my eye over recent times is Simeon Jackson of Gillingham.
Jackson first caught my eye in January of this year when his side played Aston Villa in the FA Cup, live on tv. Jackson gave the Villa defence problems all afternoon with his pace and low centre of gravity.
I've been keeping tabs on Jackson ever since, and he's continued to impress. Indeed, several clubs from the division above have also been keeping tags on him.
Like DJ Campbell, Jackson plays on the shoulder of the last defender, using his pace to good effect.
However, he's more than just that. He can hold the ball up and can run the channels very well, and is more than useful in the air as his goal in last season's League Two playoff final shows.
He has already bagged eight goals in eleven games this season, including a hat-trick on the opening day of the league season.
Jackson would probably be very open to a move to the seaside, but the fact that his contract with the Gills runs until June 2011 presents an obvious problem: would we be prepared to stump up a sizeable fee for him? Gillingham bought him for £150,000 and would not doubt want a sizeable return on the player.
Sooner or later Ian Holloway is going to have to come to the same conclusion as the rest of us; that we need a striker, and when he does, Simeon Jackson is a player that he should take a very close look at.