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James Crawley

James Crawley writes

Posted Friday, August 9th 2019

Afobe to take his City challenge by storm

Benik Afobe believes he can play his best football at Bristol City as he aims for a successful 2019/20 campaign.

City completed the loan signing of 26-year-old Afobe from Stoke City on transfer deadline day, adding the player to their attacking firepower for the season.

Afobe was Potters top scorer in 2018/19 but the striker says there is more to come from his game.

Following a period of interest from both parties, Afobe linked up with his new teammates on Friday morning as the club prepares for its Sky Bet Championship fixture away to Birmingham City.

He told the club website: “My agent spoke to Stoke and at this point in my career I want to be playing week in, week out. I saw how Bristol City played last season and they’re a good footballing team, the manager (Lee Johnson) has a good philosophy down here and I want to be a part of it and be back to the Benik Afobe of the past.

“Last season the club just missed out on the play-offs, I want to be a part of this good footballing side and hopefully we can have a good season this year.

“For one reason or another it hasn’t worked out for me at Stoke but I was still top goalscorer.”

The experienced forward explained how his game will help him slot into the City setup, where he is aiming to help fire Lee Johnson’s squad towards their goals.

“I’m a striker who likes service in behind and play one-on-one with the goalkeeper,” he continued. “From how I’ve seen Bristol City play over the last few years, they get a lot of chances, make good service so hopefully it will click for me and we will have a good season.

“The manager said to me how he has a young squad now. I’m only 26 but I’m one of the most experienced, I’ve played in this league for many years, I know what it’s about and I’m trying to bring not just goals, but also my experience and what I have learned over the years to this football club.

“Hopefully the lads can learn from me so I can learn from them and we can have a successful time.

When asked if he has set himself a goals target for the new season, Afobe replied: “I want to score in every game so if that’s the case I would score 45 goals from the remaining games!

“I work in steps and hopefully as soon as I can get to double figures I can keep going, breathe confidence for myself and the squad. The only goal I have is for us to get promoted.”

Afobe’s career began at Arsenal, where he signed his first professional contract in 2010. His development continued with loan spells at Huddersfield Town, Reading, Bolton, Millwall, Sheffield Wednesday and MK Dons before he secured a permanent move to Wolves in January 2015.

After scoring 22 times from 46 appearances in the Sky Bet Championship, Afobe earned his move to the top flight with AFC Bournemouth. He would return on loan to Wolves before a permanent move back to the Midlands club.

He then spent the first half of last season on loan at Stoke City, signing for the Potters in January. He would end the campaign as the club’s top goalscorer.

Afobe is London-born, he represented England at youth level and he has gone on to represent the Democratic Republic of Congo national side.

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