Nottingham Forest comment: Pursuit of Derby County’s Buchanan shows Reds mean business this season
Nottingham Forest flattered to deceive last season in the Sky Bet Championship. Inconsistency was the biggest issue in their underperformance.
Nottingham Forest fans watched the Reds scrambling around for results at times. They finished their 2020/21 campaign in 17th place – just nine points safe of the relegation places.
Now Chris Hughton is tasked with putting together a squad that is capable of challenging for promotion next season. That is a season just eight days away and one where Forest will travel to Coventry City for their first match.
Hughton has so far brought in American ‘keeper Ethan Horvath (Club Brugge) and Cafù (Olympiacos) but he is still in the hunt for others. Seemingly at the top of his wishlist is young Derby County defender Lee Buchanan.
Sun reporter Alan Nixon said on his Twitter feed over a week ago that Forest had made a bid:
Forest initial bid in but too low … https://t.co/RIxk6Stwwn
— Alan Nixon (@reluctantnicko) July 23, 2021
As Nixon and others have pointed out, the initial offer from Nottingham Forest for 20-year-old Buchanan has been deemed too low. Thus, it has been dismissed out of hand.
However, Nixon followed up his earlier tweet with another one on Tuesday:
Forest. New and improved bid for Lee Buchanan. Derby said no. Latest package definitely better … but not yet enough.
— Alan Nixon (@reluctantnicko) July 27, 2021
Again, for Nottingham Forest, it is another bid that has been knocked back by the Rams. Improved it may have been, but it seemingly does not meet the required level where Derby County will consider it.
England Under-21 star Buchanan first broke into the Rams first-team plans at the end of the 2019/20 campaign where he made five Championship appearances. Since then he has nailed a starting spot down in Wayne Rooney’s underperforming side.
Last season saw the talented youngster go on to make 35 appearances, providing three assists. His displays shone out from the gloom of Derby’s faltering season and have seemingly marked him as a figure of interest for Nottingham Forest – Celtic are also linked.
Nottingham Forest are obviously not settling for the mediocrity that they showed throughout large swathes of last season.
Whilst they have only brought in two players so far, the Reds seem determined that Lee Buchanan will be the next through the door at the City Ground.
At 20-years old and with the level of displays that he showed last season for Derby County, you can see why he is so highly rated. It also lends an understanding as to why Nottingham Forest are pursuing him so hard.
It appears that Derby County are holding out for a higher bid to come in. Nottingham Forest could also be testing the waters a little with their approaches. They might be in the shallows paddling now but they could make the decision to plunge into the deep end later with a bigger offer.
It looks like it will take such a substantial offer to prise Lee Buchanan away from Pride Park. He has a year left on his current deal and Derby hold an option of a further year. That is an option that you would expect the Rams to take up as a given.
Still, the doggedness of Nottingham Forest’s pursuit of Lee Buchanan seems to show that they are serious and mean business this coming season.