Last summer, Norwich City completed some very impressive transfer business. In bringing in the likes of Ricky van Wolfswinkel, Gary Hooper and Leroy Fer, Chris Hughton was making the signings that many felt could propel them to the next level – turning them into a Premier League mainstay.
Instead, the Canaries are just one point outside the relegation zone after 26 games, and most surprisingly, they have scored just 19 league goals all season.
Last season, Hooper scored that many for Celtic on his own, while van Wolfswinkel netted 14 in the Primeira Liga for Sporting Lisbon. But the Premier League is a different challenge and for now things just have not gone right for Hughton’s men.
One player they had a chance of signing – prior to the arrival of Johan Elmander – was Ola Toivonen – who told Sky Sports he was ruling nothing out as he approached the final year of his contract with PSV Eindhoven.
But in the end, the 27-year-old moved to French side Rennes in January, and has hit the ground running.
After scoring against Lyon in just his second start, Toivonen went one better on Saturday, netting a brace in a 2-2 draw with Montpellier.
That means the Swede already had three goals in four matches, leaving Norwich to wonder what might have been had they managed to secure his signature.
Much like Hooper and van Wolfswinkel in Scotland and Portugal respectively, the fact that Toivonen is scoring in France (and previously in Holland) does not automatically mean he would have been a success in England.
But with every goal he nets for Rennes there will be that sense of “what if?”; unless of course Norwich’s current strikers start doing what they were once renowned for.
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