It’s not even the summer yet and the transfer rumour mill is already starting to turn.
One player that has consistently been linked with a move of late is Nottingham Forest‘s Brennan Johnson.
The 20-year-old Welsh international has an impressive 15 goals and nine assists in 43 Championship appearances this campaign, which has reportedly attracted a number of suitors.
In recent days we have seen Brentford and Villareal linked with a move for Johnson, with reports also stating that Newcastle United, Everton and Leicester City also hold an interest in the forward.
For the time being though, Johnson should block out the noise and try to help Forest get over the line with their promotion bid, as remaining at the City Ground if they go up to the Premier League could be the ideal solution for the youngster.
Now, there is the small matter of his contract expiring in 2023 – meaning Forest may want to cash in on him regardless – but if the Reds do gain promotion, staying at the City Ground, at least for a further year, could be the perfect stepping stone for Johnson to playing in the top flight.
Sure, he could go to a Leeds, an Everton, who are big Premier League clubs, but so would Forest be if they can get back into the top flight.
Admittedly though, Leicester, just in terms of their recent finishing positions and European football, and Newcastle, in terms of the project they’re building, could be attractive options as they’re on a slightly higher level than those other clubs right now.
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Villareal too, could have it’s merits. We’ve seen Arnaut Danjuma go over to Spain from the Championship this season and have a really successful campaign, featuring regularly in the UEFA Champions League where Villareal are semi-finalists.
However, game time becomes the big worry with the likes of Leicester, Newcastle and Villareal, something which he knows he is sure of if he were to remain at Forest if they went up.
There is also the added bonus of knowing the system and knowing that you fit the system of the manager of the club you are at.
Johnson could quite easily join one of the above clubs but find that, actually, the role he is playing isn’t quite for him or he doesn’t quite like their style of play, whereas at Forest, he knows Steve Cooper’s tactical set up well and has thrived playing in it.
All things considered then, at 20-years-old, you can’t help but think if Forest went up, staying at the club for another year may be beneficial towards Brennan Johnson’s development.
He has thrived under Steve Cooper at the City Ground and if Forest gain promotion, Johnson could play an important role for the Reds in trying to keep them in the Premier League.