Unable to agree to a contract with him, Sheffield Wednesday released Fernando Forestieri yesterday after five years of service at the South Yorkshire club.
The Italian national of Argentinian ancestry and birth joined the Owls in later August 2015 in a £3.7million deal from Premier League Watford. He’d been at Watford two years with the Hornets taking advantage of their link to Udinese to ‘acquire’ him on a free.
His was a journey that involved many teams as he was passed around the Pozzo-owned sides such as Watford, Udinese and Malaga. In total, since making his breakthrough into the Newell’s Old Boys U-19s, Forestieri has featured for nine clubs, 11 if you count Newell’s Old Boys and Boca Juniors II sides.
Forestieri’s release by Wednesday means that he is now a free agent and available to all and sundry. He’s still a player who can cut it at Championship level. Here are five sides who might want to take a punt on the former Owl.
Birmingham City: The Blues will have a new man at the helm next season. They saw that new brooms sweep clean and maybe the new man in the hot-seat at St Andrews will want to start his tidying with snapping up Forestieri. Able to play across the front-three, this versatility would make him a perfect foil for the goal presence of Lukas Jutkiewicz.
Reading: The Berkshire outfit look likely to finish in midtable of this Covid-19 struck season. They have been led by the goals of George Puscas (9) and Yakou Meite (8) with players like John Swift providing the ammunition (10 assists). Adding someone like Forestieri, with his guile and potential, could be the key that unlocks playoff football.
Huddersfield Town: having a torrid time in the two seasons since Premier League relegation, the Terriers could be looking for a lift they are reliant on the goals of Karlan Grant (16) and Steve Mounie (8) but either/both of those could be targetted by other clubs in the summer window. Moving for Forestieri would be a smart move in that Town know that he’s Championship seasoned and can do a job at this level.
Wigan Athletic: The Latics are currently 17th in the table with Kieffer Moore their leading forward in the goalscoring charts (6), level with defender Cheyenne Dunkley. Bringing in Forestieri would give the Lancastrian side that extra nous up front and he could be the sort of player to thrive behind a lone striker such as Moore and feeding off the supply of Sam Morsy and Michael Jacobs.
Leeds United: A wildcard here in the Whites who currently have Patrick Bamford (13) leading their scoring charts. Behind him, as a #10, Leeds have employed the likes of Pablo Hernandez and Tyler Roberts. However, and this would be a contentious point with United fans, maybe bringing in Forestieri would be a better fit. He’s proved effective in this position before and he is a player that once nearly joined the Whites before Sheffield Wednesday nipped in and bought him.
He’s got what it takes at this level.
Likely to move abroad.
Hard to say.
Depends if clubs can split player and ego.