Nottingham Forest will take on Huddersfield Town in the Championship play-off final on Sunday, and if they are successful at Wembley it would be their first season back in the Premier League since 1999.
Steve Cooper has performed miracles at the City Ground, with the Welshman taking Forest from the bottom of the table, with just one point from seven games when he took over at the end of September, to a fourth-place finish just eight points shy of automatic promotion.
If Forest secure promotion back to the Premier League for next season, Cooper must do everything he can to strike a permanent deal for Middlesbrough loanee Djed Spence, who has been attracting attention from a number of clubs following his season at Nottingham Forest.
Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal have also been linked with interest in the defender, and it’s not hard to see why when you consider his standout performances this season in the Championship.
As per SofaScore, the £20m-valjued ace – who was dubbed “unbelievable” by Ian Wright – has scored two goals and contributed three assists this season, making 1.5 interceptions, 1.4 tackles and 1.1 clearances per game and winning the majority of his aerial duels (57%), proving that he is effective in defensive and attacking play.
Indeed, Cooper himself is a huge admirer of the 21-year-old, whose commitment to the Forest cause has been championed by his manager.
Despite interest from two massive clubs who compete regularly for Champions League qualification, it was reported earlier this month that Forest would have the chance to keep the 21-year-old right-back should they get promoted, which is a huge boost for the club if they can achieve it.
Earlier this month, TEAMtalk reported that Spence would turn down a move to the aforementioned London duo and commit his long-term future to Forest, should the club to whom he is currently loaned get the job done at Wembley this weekend.
With that being said, Cooper and the powerbrokers at the City Ground must work fast to seize that advantage on their competitors should they get back into the top flight on Sunday, and in that event, signing Spence permanently could be a major coup for the club in their attempts to compete in the Premier League.