Brentford are locked in talks with Nottingham Forest over a deal for winger Brennan Johnson, 90min understands, although they are not willing to meet his £20m valuation.
The 20-year-old has played a key role in Forest’s rise up the Championship table in recent months, registering five goals and four assists in 23 games so far this season.
90min recently revealed that Brentford are willing to spend more than £40m in the January transfer window to give themselves the best chance of preserving their Premier League status, and are keen on bringing Wales international Johnson to west London to bolster their survival bid.
The Bees are currently unwilling to shell out around half that total amount in order to bring him in though. Johnson has long had admirers at Brentford and this could be a deal that nears completion in the summer of 2022 rather than in January.
However, there is a belief at Forest that Johnson will sign a new contract if the club are promoted to the Premier League this season – they currently sit in seventh place, just one point outside the play-off spots after a run of one loss in 15 games under head coach Steve Cooper.
Ironically, Cooper was the manager in the opposing dugout when Brentford themselves reached the top flight, beating his Swansea side 2-0 in last season’s play-off final. This was the second successive campaign in which the Bees had ended Cooper’s promotion hopes after knocking the Swans out in the 2019/20 play-off semi-finals.
While Johnson is still attainable, Brentford have admitted defeat in the race to sign Brazilian right-back Vanderson. The Bees were confident of getting the deal over the line earlier this month but have been pipped to the post by Monaco.