June 13, 2024

Steve Cooper to remain Nottingham Forest manager as owner Evangelos  Marinakis backs boss | Football News | Sky Sports

Nottingham Forest: Marcos Leonardo could challenge Awoniyi

The 20-year-old has been a star performer in Brazil

Nottingham Forest are reportedly interested in Brazilian starlet Marcos Leonardo, as Steve Cooper bids to add firepower to the front line at the City Ground.

The Reds will want to push on from securing survival in their Premier League return last season, however, reinforcements must be made to add further quality to the side.

Marcos Leonardo - Special Talent | 2023 - YouTube

What’s the latest on Marcos Leonardo to Nottingham Forest?

As reported by news in Brazil, relayed by Sport Witness, Forest are ‘observing’ Santos forward Leonardo in a potential summer swoop.

The report claims that the Midlands side are weighing up whether to make an official offer for the youngster, with some reservations over his suitability for the English game.

Earlier in the year, the 20-year-old was linked with a Premier League move with Arsenal being the side in question, suggesting the quality of the striker who is valued by FootballTransfers at €21.1m (£18m).

How good is Marcos Leonardo?

Lauded as being a “natural goalscorer” by talent scout Jacek Kulig, the forward could be the perfect acquisition for Cooper’s side.

Awoniyi 'unplayable against Chelsea' & most improved player from 2013 U17  World Cup team - Ex-coach | Goal.com Nigeria

In the Brazilian Serie A, the Santos forward has made eight goal contributions in 11 appearances, securing him an average match rating of 7.15 in the league competition, via Sofascore.

While his movements in the domestic schedule are impressive, the budding talent shone at the U20 World Cup, in which he scored five and assisted once in just five games for his country.

Clinical in nature, the dynamic forward has been dubbed as a “killer in the penalty area” by Kulig, providing an obscene amount of threat in the final third for a player so early into his career.

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For Forest, it’s integral to add goal-scoring options considering the calibre of the creative individuals on show at the club who could take the side to the next level if handed a competent goal-getter.

While nominated striker Taiwo Awoniyi netted ten goals last term in the Premier League, the robust line leader lacked the ruthless edge that could make the difference between survival and relegation next season.

As per Sofascore, the 25-year-old missed eight big chances and registered only 0.6 shots on target per game in the league, calling for further reinforcements to challenge the Nigerian.

Cooper could strike gold by capturing a rival in Leonardo, who averaged 1.2 shots on target per game for Santos in Serie A, highlighting that he could fulfil expectations in areas lacking by Awoniyi.

Described as “frightening” by U23 scout Antonio Mango, the 20-year-old is identified to have strengths in agility, reactions and decision-making, as per scouting site Total Football Analysis.

A forward that excels in reading the game could be fundamental to Forest’s progression, as well as getting the best out of star attackers Morgan Gibbs-White and Brennan Johnson, who could benefit from the signing of the young Brazilian.

Highlighted as being a player that enjoys helping his teammates build attacking scenarios, the two Forest playmakers could flex their status in the final third with the added flair of the Santos star.

With 47 goals in his career already, the 2003-born ace could be the perfect target for Cooper to chase this window.

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