Leeds have been handed a transfer update in their chase for Nottingham Forest starlet Brennan Johnson.
Reports from The Athletic back in January claimed that Johnson is attracting interest from the Premier League, with Burnley and Brentford keen, and Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds also having said to have watched him this campaign.
Now, The Athletic have delivered an update on the 19-year-old’s future, revealing: “With two years left on his contract, Forest do have some security. The club are understood to value Johnson at around £10m, which is a sign of the potential they believe he has.”
Johnson’s former boss at Forest, Sabri Lamouchi, hailed him not just as an “unbelievable player” but one with the “right mentality” too, and that will surely be music to the ears of Leeds and Bielsa.
The teenager has enjoyed an impressive campaign on loan at Lincoln City in League One, scoring ten goals and providing a further twelve assists in the league.
With that canny knack of finding himself in the right place at the right time, there’s a lot to like about Johnson’s game, and there are some very promising similarities between him and how Dele Alli emerged onto the scene.
His boss at Lincoln, Michael Appleton has raved about the fearlessness of the versatile attacker, something very much akin to Alli when he was at MK Dons – the England international predominantly played in central midfield, but could also play out wide and as a number ten too.
He said: “Brennan has been great. He has a lot of pace and gives us directness when we look to counter. He has played in numerous positions for us. He has played as a nine, as a ten, as a central midfielder. He has never moaned and just gets on with it.”
In fact a tweet shared by his dad, David, pointed out the kind of comparison between Johnson and Alli.
— David Johnson (@DavidJo05034174) April 13, 2021
While Johnson is more comfortable playing out wide than Alli is or was, it’s that ability to break into the box and time his runs to either get on the end of things, or set others up that really stands out.
Just like Johnson, Alli was also prolific with both his goals and assists in his real stand-out campaign with the Dons during the 2014/2015 season, scoring 16 times and setting up nine others.
Given that Spurs themselves signed the midfielder for just £5m at the time back in the summer of 2015, and now Johnson is available for £10m, Leeds could very well sign their own Alli – both in terms of price, and more importantly, the value and impact he brings on the pitch.