Eddie Howe was backed by PIF in the January transfer window as the club brought in Dan Burn, Matt Targett, Chris Wood, Bruno Guimaraes and Kieran Trippier.
These signings, to varying degrees, have led the Magpies up the table and fans may now be wondering where the next batch of recruits come from as we head into the summer transfer window.
Johnson can be the new Waddle for Newcastle as he is an exciting, young, versatile, forward with the quality to make a big impact in the final third.
The retired Englishman played 189 games for the Magpies, joining at the age of 19, and found the back of the net 52 times before moving on to the likes of Marseille, Tottenham and Sheffield Wednesday, showing that he regularly delivered at the top end of the pitch.
He was also able to play anywhere across the attacking line for the Toon; number 10, right-wing, and left-wing.
Newcastle will enjoy the talents of a player with a similar skillset if they bring the Welsh winger, Johnson, in from Forest. The 20-year-old can play in the number 10 role, off the right, off the left and up front, whilst he has showcased his quality with 16 goals and ten assists in the Championship.
“He’s just one of those players that are very exciting, very easy on the eye. When you’re the opposition manager in League One or the Championship, hopefully soon the Premier League, he’s someone you’d take note of because he’ll always be one of the two or three teams that you’ll be aware of and be wary of.
“His development and the way it’s happened for him over the last couple of years suggests to me that he’s only going to end up going in one direction and that’s the Premier League.”
The winger ended the campaign with the most goals and assists combined (26) of any player aged 21 or under in the Championship and this, along with Appleton’s comments, illustrates the potential he holds.
Therefore, Howe can land Newcastle’s new Waddle by signing Johnson as his form for Forest and the scope for development he has indicates that he can be a key player for the Magpies in the top flight.
It is now down to PIF to ensure that they can get this £20m deal over the line.