Nottingham Forest: “Late push” for Gabriel
Nottingham Forest could well be facing a hectic end to the January transfer window, amid reports that the Premier League outfit are keen on striking a deal for Santos sensation Angelo Gabriel.
What’s the word?
That’s according to journalist Paul Taylor, who wrote on Twitter that Steve Cooper‘s side are plotting a move for the 18-year-old starlet – alongside Paris Saint-Germain veteran Keylor Navas – with just hours left until the deadline.
The reporter stated: “Nottingham Forest’s hopes of signing Keylor Navas from PSG have been boosted. And #NFFC are making a late push for Angelo Gabriel, the highly rated Santos teenager. Both deals will be logistically challenging. But it is never dull on deadline day…”
In his attached article for The Athletic, Taylor outlined that the teenager has been on the Reds’ shortlist for ‘some time’ and is regarded as ‘one of the brightest young talents in Brazil’, hence the desire to pull of this last-gasp deal.
Bad news for Lingard
The addition of the versatile forward – who was reportedly the subject of a £22m offer from Newcastle United last summer – could well spell bad news for current Forest ace Jesse Lingard, with the Englishman set to face even more competition for a starting berth.
The former Manchester United man has endured a difficult start to life at the City Ground since his arrival on a free transfer last July, having failed to provide a single goal contribution in his 14 Premier League outings, albeit while scoring twice and laying on two assists during the club’s Carabao Cup run so far.
Has Lingard been a disappointment?
Those woes have been further compounded by the 30-year-old’s recent injury blow, with the move yet to pay off for either the club or the player himself, leading to suggestions that a departure could occur come the end of the season.
The former West Ham United loanee could well find himself nudged further onto the periphery at the City Ground if the aforementioned Gabriel is to sign before tonight’s deadline, with the youngster having been described as a player of “crazy potential” by talent scout Jacek Kulig.
That glowing praise has come amid a stunning start to life at senior level for the Brazil U20 international, having already provided three goals and nine assists in 102 first-team appearances to date, a remarkable haul for someone who only turned 18 in December.
The 5 foot 8 dynamo will no doubt be able to bolster the youthful exuberance of the likes of Morgan Gibbs-White and Brennan Johnson in attack, as he notably averages 5.05 successful dribbles per game, with Lingard averaging just 0.47 per match in that regard.
With the latter seemingly entering into the latter stages of his career as he turns 31 next month, Cooper and Forest may already be eyeing a more promising, long-term option such as Gabriel who can lead the team forward in the years to come, while also being able to make a difference in the short-term.