Why Nottingham Forest should listen to their fans and sign Jonathan Kodjia
The 30-year-old has been linked with a move away from Villa Park in recent weeks, with Turkish Super Lig outfit Besiktas expressing an interest in his services while Qatari side Al-Gharafa had also put an offer of £7million on the table for the Ivorian (h/t Birmingham Live).
Kodjia, who netted 9 times during Villa’s promotion-winning campaign in the Championship the last term, has only played a meagre 20 minutes of football in the Premier League this season, with the 30-year-old Ivorian international having to deal with injuries.
The report from Birmingham Live doesn’t mention whether Forest are genuinely interested in moving for Jonathan Kodjia during the mid-season trading period but all the speculations have stemmed from the fans pushing for the 30-year-old’s arrival at the City Ground.
The Reds have laid down an early marker as one of the playoff favourites, following a superb start to life under Sabri Lamouchi. The new boss has worked his magic at the City Ground since taking over the reins from Martin O’Neill in the summer.
The Frenchman’s shrewd and diplomatic approach in the summer transfer window allowed the likes of Brice Samba, Samba Sow, Yuri Ribeiro, Alfa Semedo and Tiago Silva to come through the door.
Having inherited a big squad at the City Ground, Lamouchi initiated plenty of arrivals and departures to reshape things to his liking and the striking department was one area that underwent a lot of change, with the Reds parting ways with the likes of Apostolos Vellios, Hillal Soudani, Jason Cummings and Daryl Murphy.
Interestingly, they failed to bring in enough replacements to maintain the right kind of balance in their ranks and that has left them short of adequate cover in front of the goal.
Lewis Grabban, who has already bagged 7 goals in the Championship this term, continues to be the go-to man for Lamouchi when it comes to delivering the goods up top.
However, with Wolves loanee Rafa Mir failing to make any kind of an impact and Brennan Johnson still too young to rely upon, Forest must look for a quality back-up in January.
To put things into perspective, Jonathan Kodjia might have struggled for playtime in the Premier League but his pedigree as a proven goalscorer in the Championship has been well-documented and there is no reason why Nottingham Forest shouldn’t look at him as a potential target, especially with the fans urging them to snap him up.
The 30-year-old struck 18 goals in 49 Championship appearances for Bristol City earlier in his career and currently boasts of 29 goals in 90 second-tier outings for Aston Villa, numbers which are indicative of the fact that he can be more than a handful for defences in the Championship.
Notwithstanding the fact that Grabban has the quality to spearhead the club’s surge for promotion, Nottingham Forest could potentially find themselves in a big hole if the 31-year-old picks up an injury. And that is where an experienced head like Kodjia could come in handy.
Looking at things from Villa’s perspective, Kodjia is currently the only back-up to first-choice striker Wesley Moraes in the absence of Keinan Davis, who is nursing an injury. Thus, it remains to be seen whether they would be open to the prospect of sanctioning a move for 30-year-old in January.
However, with Kodjia’s contract set to expire next summer, Villa should consider cashing in on him to avoid the risk of losing him for absolutely nothing next summer.
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All in all, Jonathan Kodjia to Nottingham Forest in January looks like a match made in heaven and the Reds would be wise to pay heed to the opinion of their fans.