Nottingham Forest are lining up a transfer move for French defender Mickael Nade.
According to L’Equipe, the 23-year-old is a transfer target for Steve Cooper’s side for this summer.
The centre-back graduated from the Saint-Etienne youth academy, making his Ligue 1 debut at 18 years old.
Last season was a breakout campaign for the centre-back, playing 30 times in the league for the Greens as they finished 18th in France’s top flight.
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However, a relegation play-off defeat to Auxerre has seen the historic French club relegated to the second tier of the country’s footballing system.
Meanwhile, Cooper’s team are preparing for life in the Premier League having secured promotion with a play-off final victory over Huddersfield Town.
Forest will face competition for Nade from fellow French side Angers.
The Reds have been built on a solid defensive base under Cooper, with the likes of Tobias Figueiredo, Steve Cook, Scott McKenna and Joe Worrall all excelling under the 42-year old.
However, Nade is highly-rated and still has plenty of time to continue developing his game, having only just had his first season playing regular football.
With Figueiredo also out of contract this summer, Forest will need to look at acquisitions for their back-line, and have also been linked recently with former Reds player Jamaal Lascelles.
This could be a very shrewd signing for Forest, who are targeting a defender with a good reputation in French football.
St Etienne being relegated could also help earn the Reds a cut-rate price on the player, with financial concerns a big issue for a lot of Ligue 1 clubs.
This would also be a signing with a good signing for the future with youth very much on Nade’s side.
This is the kind of clever move in the transfer market that a club like Forest will need to help the team survive in the Premier League on a limited budget.