Cooper Eyeing Nottingham Forest Swoop For “Reliable” £20m Goal Machine, He’s Better Than Awoniyi

Cooper Eyeing Nottingham Forest Swoop For “Reliable” £20m Goal Machine, He’s Better Than Awoniyi

Nottingham Forest: Habib Diallo could usurp Awoniyi
The Ligue 1 ace scored 20 goals last season…

Nottingham Forest are reportedly interested in Strasbourg marksman Habib Diallo as first-team manager Steve Cooper looks to bolster his side this summer.

The Reds must add some additional quality ahead of the 2023/24 campaign, after leaving survival late to secure their second-year stay in the Premier League.

What’s the latest on Habib Diallo to Nottingham Forest?
As reported by TEAMtalk earlier this week, Forest are one of the clubs ready to battle West Ham and Brentford for the signature of Ligue 1 ace Diallo.

The report claims that Cooper has made signing a striker one of the ‘top priorities’ this summer, which they could achieve in capturing the Strasbourg goal machine in a deal valued around £20m.

How good is Habib Diallo?
Having scored 20 goals in 37 Ligue 1 appearances last season, the 28-year-old cemented himself as a sharpshooter in a league packed with attacking talent.

The Senegalese striker outscored the likes of Lionel Messi and Neymar last term, continuing his adequate scoring streak in France.

RCSA striker closes in on Italy - US Sports

Representing FC Metz, Stade Brestois and Strasbourg, Diallo has made 134 goal contributions in a recorded 271 appearances, scoring 107 and assisting 27 in his career in the country, via Transfermarkt.

His rich scoring stint last term saw him dubbed as “reliable” by manager Frederic Antonetti, making him an undoubtedly strong acquisition for Cooper to chase, considering his side’s yearning for a natural goalscorer.

Forest’s top scorer last term was Taiwo Awoniyi, who made the switch from Union Berlin last summer, scoring 10 Premier League goals in his debut campaign.

While the Nigerian acted as an assured presence on those occasions, the Reds lacked the firepower sufficient enough to keep them away from the bottom three, as relegation cast over the fun of their return to the Premier League.

In signing Diallo, Cooper could find himself with a trusted goal scorer, as well as a player suggested by his statistics to be more multidimensional in his approach to leading the line than Awoniyi.

As per FBref comparisons, the Senegal international averaged 6.00 touches in the penalty area per 90 in comparison to the Nigerian’s 3.53, highlighting the influence in his positioning and movement to receive the ball in key areas.

A similar pattern is evident in terms of the quality of Diallo in front of goal, averaging 1.13 shots on target per 90 to the Forest man’s 0.96, as well as scoring 10 more goals than the 25-year-old in his respective league campaign.

Once hailed as “powerful and quick” by members of the media, the Forest target could prove to be the perfect capture to lead the line in competition with Awoniyi, giving Cooper an opportunity to fuse different approaches to play between the two forwards.

Scoring just 38 goals in 38 games last term, it’s imperative that the Welshman addresses his side’s weakness in front of goal this summer, with little room for error next term with teams around them also having the chance to improve during the break.

Should Forest wish to remain in the top-tier, signing Diallo could be a strong start to getting the side consistently ticking in the Premier League, adding to the talent already on show at the City Ground.

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