According to the back page of today’s Sunday Life Sport (tweet – below) from the Belfast Telegraph, Nottingham Forest are readying to bid £2million for Northern Ireland star Gavin Whyte.
On today's back page: @NFFC eye Gavin Whyte, @NorthernIreland boss Michael O'Neill plays down club links, Liverpool toast Euro joy and we've got the latest developments on the @ColeraineFC job. pic.twitter.com/jVXQnMVa23
— Sunday Life Sport (@SundayLifeSport) June 1, 2019
23-year-old winger Whyte only joined current club Oxford United in mid-July last year from Northern Ireland Premiership side Crusaders. He featured in 36 games for Oxford, scoring seven goals and adding five assists in League One.
Forest spent big ahead of last season splashing out an astonishing £13.5m-or-so in bringing in Benfica midfielder Joao Carvalho. They also spent big on Lewis Grabban (£6m from Bournemouth) and also transfer fees in the £millions for Tobias Figueiredo (£2m from Sporting CP) and El Arbi Soudani (£2.7m from Dinamo Zagreb).
That outlay of around £25million didn’t pay dividends, Forest finishing in 9th position and eight points shy of the play-off places. Carvalho scored four goals and assisted eight and Grabban scored 16 and assisted three more.
The paymasters at the City Ground would have wanted more bang for their buck, with the Reds hitting the play-offs being the minimum of their expectations. That wasn’t to be, and it seems that their sights are already set on Belfast-born Whyte.
The young winger is a rising star in the Northern Ireland set-up, playing in an advanced role down the right. He’s got four international caps to his name since his goal-scoring debut in 2018 against Israel in a friendly fixture.
He’s since gone on to feature in games against Bosnia, Ireland and Austria which have increased his profile. Domestically though, it is the returns in his first season of English football that are likely to have encouraged Nottingham Forest to spark up this bid.