Those Crystal Palace fans who witnessed the steady progress Dwight Gayle made during the second half of 2013/14 can be forgiven for having misgivings over the signing of another forward in Fraizer Campbell.
After all, Gayle’s seven strikes across the Premier League campaign made him the club’s joint-top scorer along with Jason Puncheon.
True his appearances may have been sporadic in nature and of variable length.
Yet, of the myriad players who made 20 outings or more for their clubs last term, only Sergio Aguero, Luis Suarez, Daniel Sturridge, Edin Dzeko and Robin van Persie scored at a rate better than Gayle’s goals per 90 minutes ratio of 0.64.
It’s a heartening stat for a man that had reportedly struggled with his record signing tag in the wake of a breakneck rise from the Conference North to the Premier League in little over a year.
Tony Pulis suggested as much when discussing this very subject in the wake of the 23-year-old’s second brace in as many games at Craven Cottage on the final day of 2013/14.
The Welshman spoke of working to coax Gayle out of his shell and integrate him into the group and the need to relieve him of the self-imposed pressures that accompanied the desire to live up to his star billing.
In removing Gayle from his starting XI as he got the Eagles shipshape, Pulis allowed the former Arsenal trainee to blossom at his own pace.
Far from hindering his development, purchasing Campbell can be construed as a continuation of this policy, with the former Cardiff man around to share the weight of responsibilities that had threatened to squash Gayle’s top-flight career before it had even started.
The question of how best to include a sub 5ft10in center-forward into a Pulis side remains a pertinent one for both players.
However, the Eagles’ acquisition of 5ft8in Campbell, who is smaller even than Gayle, shows that it’s one that Welshman is inclined to answer this term.