Nottingham Forest had an ambitious transfer window in the summer ahead of their return to the Premier League with 23 new players joining the squad at The City Ground, however, the expectations set haven’t been met by the newly-built team.
The Tricky Trees have spent the majority of their long-awaited top-flight campaign in the relegation zone due to a difficult and disappointing start to the season, which led to Evangelos Marinakis sacking his head of recruitment and head scout in October.
Indeed, Steve Cooper had seemingly started to build some positive form in the last five outings Forest had before the World Cup break but even going unbeaten in four out of the five fixtures hasn’t been enough to secure safety as of yet.
Although Forest managed to acquire as good as an entirely new squad during the last transfer window, remarkably there were still some transfer targets that were missed during the £150m spending spree, something that clearly irked Marinakis due to his dismissal of his recruitment team.
One player who the newly-promoted club tried to sign was Valencia and USMNT star Yunus Musah, with a £25m bid submitted for the midfielder during the summer but it was quickly rejected by the LaLiga club.
Since then, Musah has been capturing the attention of the football world after making a standout appearance at the World Cup in Qatar with his national team and has quickly become a hot prospect for many elite Premier League clubs.
According to 90min, Chelsea, Liverpool and Arsenal have all expressed an interest in the young talent with the two latter clubs even making contact with the player’s representatives after his impressive displays for USMNT.
Over four World Cup appearances, the 20-year-old – who was hailed the “real deal” by journalist Ives Galarcep – tallied up an 87% pass completion rate, as well as averaging one shot on goal, 58.3 touches, two tackles, one successful dribble and 4.5 duels won per game.
In fact, Musah would have been the perfect upgrade for Forest’s Ryan Yates in the centre of the pitch, with the Valencia wonderkid having been superior to his positional peer in many attributes.
Over the season so far, Musah has outperformed Yates in his assists (2 v 1), pass completion rate (80.4% v 80.1%), shot-creating actions (23 v 14) and tackles won (14 v 12).
Should Forest have signed Yunus Musah?
With that being said, the signing of Musah would have been a great piece of business for Forest, however, it is looking like that ship may have sailed for the club as the competition for his signature has tightened significantly and after a fantastic international campaign, his transfer value will likely soar.