Nottingham Forest are offering around £25 million for Merih Demiral but Atalanta’s Serie A centre-back is ‘not convinced’ about joining the Premier League outfit on the final day of the January transfer window, according to Tuttomercatoweb.
With Felipe on his way to the City Ground from Spanish giants Atletico Madrid, it may come as a surprise to learn that Forest are ready and willing to splash out a colossal sum on another central defender.
But the two-time European champions are not the sort of team who leave anything to chance; a remarkable recruitment drive since beating Huddersfield Town in the play-off final ensuring that Steve Cooper has at least two or three options in almost every single position.
Demiral, then, would add further depth and competition for places following the departure of Loic Bade and Steve Cook’s probable exit.
Nottingham Forest want Merih Demiral of Serie A outfit Atalanta
Demiral, formerly of Juventus, Sassuolo and Sporting Lisbon, is a target. TMW believe that Nottingham Forest have stepped up their pursuit of the Turkey international today; putting forward an initial loan deal with an obligation-to-buy clause of around £25 million included.
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That would make Demiral the second-most expensive signing in Forest’s entire history, behind only Morgan Gibbs-White.
Atalanta are will listen to offers; 24-year-old Demiral having found himself in and out of Gian Piero Gasperini’s starting XI. The player himself, however, has reservations about leaving a team chasing Champions League qualification for one looking to avoid relegation, even if Forest have lost just one of their last seven league matches either side of the Qatar World Cup.
“I could see him in the Premier League,” former Turkey boss Mircea Lucescu said. “He would adapt very well to the league. Demiral is a good player, an excellent professional.
“Wherever he goes, he has always done very well, and this means that he can have a great future. He will be the worthy heir of (Juventus and Italy legend Giorgio) Chiellini.”
In addition to Demiral and Felipe, Nottingham Forest are hoping to sign Newcastle United veteran Jonjo Shelvey on deadline day. A goalkeeper to replace the injured Dean Henderson is also a priority.
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