According to Midlands football reporter for The Telegraph John Percy, Nottingham Forest are close to making their first signing of the summer by completing the deal for Union Berlin striker Awoniyi.
“NFFC are close to making Taiwo Awoniyi their first major summer signing in a club-record £17.5m deal.”
Steve Cooper will be delighted that Nottingham Forest are close to making their first signing ahead of their long-awaited return to the Premier League in a few weeks’ time, as the manager sets out to build and develop his team to compete in the top flight.
Former Liverpool forward Awoniyi has been impressing over in the Bundesliga after joining Union Berlin just 12 months ago on a permanent move from Merseyside and proved in Germany this season that he definitely has the potential to be effective enough to return to the Premier League.
The 24-year-old goal machine has scored 20 times and contributed five assists in all competitions for his Bundesliga fifth-place finishing side, but it’s not just his goal contributions that will have caught Cooper’s eye.
Awoniyi created four big chances, winning four duels and taking 2.2 shots on goal on average per game and successfully completed 56% of his dribble attempts in 31 league appearances. Interestingly, he ranked first in the entire top five European leagues for tackles made in the opponent’s half last season (332).
The Nigerian star who was hailed “sensational” by Achim Beierlorzer is reportedly keen for a move back to the Premier League, and Nottingham Forest are more than capable of giving Awoniyi that opportunity as they are in need of reinforcements in their striker role.
Keinan Davis returned to Aston Villa after his loan spell at Forest and Lewis Grabban, despite currently negotiating a new contract, is now 34 years old and won’t be around for much longer, so building a forward line for the future by adding in Awoniyi would be a great step forward for Forest.