'He is a powerful force': BBC pundit thinks Newcastle have just signed a real game-changer
Newcastle United have signed a “powerful force” in Chris Wood, according to BBC Sport’s Mark Lawrenson.
The Magpies completed the signing of the 30-year-old striker on Thursday for £25million.
Newcastle were eager to bolster their attacking ranks even before Callum Wilson’s injury.
The Magpies moved quickly to bring Wood in from Premier League relegation rivals Burnley.
Wood has been a key player for the Clarets, having finished as their top Premier League scorer in three seasons.
The New Zealand international has netted at least 10 goals in each of his four top-flight seasons with his old club.
Wood is likely to make his Newcastle debut in Saturday’s league meeting with Watford at St James’ Park.
And Lawrenson feels Wood is going to be a game-changer for the Magpies.
“I can see why they bought him”
Indeed, the BBC pundit predicts Eddie Howe’s side will claim a 2-1 win against the beleaguered Hornets.
“Chris Wood should go straight into the Newcastle side and I can see why they bought him,” Lawrenson wrote on BBC Sport.
“He is not a prolific goalscorer but he is a powerful force up front, and will hold the ball up.
“You can just picture the scene at St James’ Park.
“There will be a full house and, after signing Wood, they will all be expecting a really good performance and a win.
“Newcastle need it, not just to improve their own situation but to keep Watford right in the relegation mix as well.
“The problem Eddie Howe’s men have there is that, defensively, we know they are all over the place.
“I still think the Magpies will win, because Watford are leaking a lot of goals and losing a lot of games.
“But it might be a tense finish and Newcastle will need their fans as well as Wood to get them over the line.”
Wood was Burnley’s record signing when he arrived from Leeds for £15million in 2017.
He scored 53 goals in 165 games for the Clarets, including three in 17 league appearances this season.
Newcastle are now prioritising a new centre-back, with Diego Carlos said to be a top target.