Nottingham Forest striker Keinan Davis, on loan from Premier League outfit Aston Villa, could be made available for a permanent move in the summer with the West Midlands club looking to clear out the deadwood in their squad.
Speaking to Nottinghamshire Live, Birmingham Live journalist Ashley Preece revealed the latest on Villa’s plans for Davis.
“The feeling at Villa is that Davis is surplus to requirements,” claimed Preece. “He’ll have two years on his contract when pre-season begins in July and there’s every hope Villa will be able to make a decent profit on the 24-year-old.
“Gerrard and the club have really high hopes for next season and they want to crack Europe. To be blunt, Davis is not going to get them there.
“In terms of a deal, I think a fee between £5m and £10m would be the ballpark figure Villa would be looking for. Strikers cost money and Davis has proved himself to be a good one in Nottingham.”
The striker has scored four goals and registered one assist in 12 Championship appearances for Steve Cooper’s side, who are still very much within a chance of finishing the season in a playoff spot.
With regular forward Lewis Grabban spending two months on the sidelines, the Villa loanee has really stepped up at the City Ground.
The Jamaican, ten years Davis’ senior, had scored 12 Championship goals in 28 appearances prior to his injury in late January and returned from his layoff on Saturday, coming off the bench as Forest won 4-1 at Blackpool.
Now, with the 34-year-old back fit and Davis in good form, Cooper’s mouth will be watering at the prospect of having both strikers involved during the run-in.
The Nottinghamshire outfit sit just one point and one place outside of the playoff positions but have a whopping three games in hand on sixth-placed Blackburn Rovers with nine league matches still to be played in the second-tier.
As well as both Davis and Grabban, 20-year-old winger Brennan Johnson is currently the Reds’ top scorer with 14 goals in all competitions this term, whilst midfielder Ryan Yates (eight) and winger Philip Zinckernagel (six) also sit pretty in the Forest scoring charts.
Granted, if Forest were to be promoted to the Premier League, the Reds may target more ambitious striking options than Davis who, despite having top-flight experience, has scored just once in 812 minutes of action in England’s elite competition.
Although, former Villa captain Jack Grealish did previously label the striker as “absolutely unplayable.”
However, if they are to fall short and face a 15th consecutive season in the Championship, the purchase of Davis on a permanent basis would certainly be shrewd.
At 34, Grabban won’t be able to repeat his scoring efforts this term for much longer whilst there is talk of Johnson departing for a Premier League side in the summer.
The Englishman will already know Cooper’s system whilst the Welshman will be familiar with Davis’ strengths and weaknesses. Moreover, at 24 years of age, there is still plenty of potential to be unlocked. It certainly seems a no-brainer.