Bordeaux president Gerard Lopez admitted he has no idea why Josh Maja’s £4 million move to Nottingham Forest fell through on transfer deadline day, while speaking to Sud Ouest France.
How Chris Hughton could have done with him, too.
In their last 51 Championship games, an insomnia-curing Nottingham Forest side have scored just 41 goals.
Lewis Grabban looks a shadow of his 2019 peak while Lyle Taylor, a prolific finder of the net at Charlton Athletic, has not come close to living up to those lofty expectations at the City Ground.
In fact, Forest’s striker situation has become so desperate that, according to The Athletic, plans are now being drawn up to turn Brennan Johnson – a jet-heeled winger by trade – into a something of a false nine.
Was Josh Maja exactly what Nottingham Forest needed?
Maja, a penalty-box poacher who impressed during spells at Sunderland and Fulham, felt like the missing piece in Hughton’s jigsaw.
A £4 million deal was agreed with cash-strapped Bordeaux, only for the deal to collapse at the eleventh hour – much to the bemusement of president Lopez.
“Regarding Josh Maja, we had offers to buy him,” said a man who played a massive role in Lille’s stunning Ligue 1 triumph last season.
“The player preferred a club and (the deal) was not done but I do not know the reason why.”
According to L’Equipe, a failed medical was the reason behind the collapse. Since returning to Wine Country from a loan spell at Craven Cottage, a niggling back injury has kept Maja out of contention.
Perhaps that is the reason why Nottingham Forest, a two-time European Champion fallen on hard times, missed out on the goal-hunting, penalty-box predator they are crying out for.
With Philip Zinckernagel, Alex Mighten and Brennan Johnson pulling the strings, Forest are hardly short in the creativity department. Whether they can turn those chances into goals is another matter entirely.