In the Pipeline: Nottingham Forest’s Brennan Johnson

It may not be a great time to be a Nottingham Forest fan at the moment. The club find themselves in poor form and have fallen away from the play-offs after previously having hopes of potentially gaining promotion.

If there was a positive to take from it though, then it would the fact Arvin Appiah has just made his first-team breakthrough. However, there is a player who potentially has the ability to surpass his development.

Forward Brennan Johnson has been in magnificent form of late and is showing plenty of tricky attributes that could make him a force to be reckoned with in the Championship in the near future.

At 17 years of age, he is still exceptionally raw but his latest performances have shown just how promising he is.

This week, he scored a hat-trick for the club’s U23 side as they hammered Ipswich 4-1. All of his goals were of extreme quality. He first displayed his dead-ball technique, striking a free-kick home from 25 yards, before his second came courtesy of a sweetly struck long-range effort.

If that wasn’t enough, he then found the back of the net once again from a cleverly worked set-piece, coming short, before bouncing the ball over a crowd of players.

It was three goals that showed the confidence of the player, having scored twice against Millwall a week previous too.

It’s no surprise that the attacker has attracted the interest of Everton before. The Premier League side were sniffing around the player in March 2017, only for Forest to issue a hands-off warning.

And they will be counting their blessings that they were able to keep him.

All of the debate surrounding the youth academy at the moment appears to be whether he can become better than Appiah.

Only last week, Chris Cohen, Forest’s U23 assistant coach said this: “The debate in the staff room for a number of years has been who is going to be better, Brennan or Arvin. And not everyone always says Arvin, so that probably shows you the level that we believe Brennan can get to.”

Johnson already has Forest pedigree running through his blood. His father, David Johnson was a huge hit at the City Ground between 2001 and 2006 but if his son continues at the rate he’s going, he may well be able to surpass him.