What’s that you say? Nottingham Forest tried and failed to sign an exciting Eredivisie playmaker?
That has been the story of the summer at the City Ground, with El Messaoudi one of three Netherlands-based schemers who, at one point or another, entered the thinking of a club currently sitting bottom of England’s second tier.
As you probably know by now, Nottingham Forest failed with not one, not two but three bids for Fortuna Sittard’s Zian Flemming.
Meanwhile, a £2.5 million deal had been agreed with Sparta Rotterdam for Abdou Harroui only for the Netherlands U21 international to join Serie A’s perennial overachievers Sassuolo on deadline day instead.
And who can blame him for chasing his “dream” all the way to Italy?
El Messaoudi would have been a cheaper option for Nottingham Forest
How close Forest came to landing El Messaoudi, however, is less clear.
Voetbal International claims there was interest from the two-time European champions, although it isn’t certain whether a bid was ever launched.
Either way, it’s now clear El Messaoudi would have cost Forest a lot less than Flemming or Harroui.
The Moroccan maestro has just ten months left on his contract and, according to Voetbal International and Sporx, a cut-price £350,000 move to Super Lig outfit Gaziantep should be signed, sealed and delivered before the Turkish transfer window closes in midweek.
A fine deliverer of a dead ball and a threat from long range, El Messaoudi scored eight goals from central midfield last season.
If Chris Hughton wants to drag a bruised and battered Forest side off the comfort of the canvas, he could do with one of his own players finding the net on a more regular basis.
Only Brennan Johnson, Lyle Taylor, Philip Zinckernagel and Scott McKenna (one apiece) have found the net in the Championship so far.