Calls for Nottingham Forest to ask questions of Dwight Gayle’s availability should come as no surprise, but he should not be considered a replacement for Lewis Grabban.
Reds legend Kenny Burns has suggested that two deals should be done before Thursday’s deadline.
One in, one out.
If he was calling the shots at the City Ground, then Grabban would be packing his bags and Gayle unloading his after arriving from Newcastle.
The European Cup winner has said in the Nottingham Post: “If Nottingham Forest are serious in their quest to finish in the Championship’s top six, then they should sell Lewis Grabban and replace him with Dwight Gayle before the transfer window closes on Thursday.
“I watched Grabban’s performance closely on Saturday evening against West Brom and I just felt like he wasn’t interested, it’s a real concern with time running out to change things.
“He moped about, he barely showed any effort and just flopped on the floor hoping to get a free-kick from the referee.”
Burns added: “Dwight Gayle would be among my choice for his ability to score goals in the Championship, if not for his ability to win dodgy penalties.
“He was excellent at West Brom last season scoring 24 times for the Baggies – and he’s got the movement and ability to be a success at Forest, he’d get the crowd off their seat.
“Grabban may have scored 17 in his first campaign at the City Ground, but I’ve seen nothing from him during pre-season which fills me with any confidence – this is something I’ve been saying for a period, it’s time to get rid.”
This is, of course, far too simplistic.
It also misses the point when it comes to ambition and needs on Trentside.
Well, actually, it misses plenty of them.
Firstly, Forest need more frontmen, no trade of one for another.
If we are dealing in fantasy football, then Gayle alongside Grabban in the Reds squad would be the preference.
That is the kind of ambition which would spark promotion dreams.
The City Ground wage bill is, however, already eye-watering.
Gayle, on the Premier League salary he boasts at St James’ Park, just doesn’t work.
The numbers don’t stack up.
Burns’ argument will be that you get Grabban off the books and pass that money to Gayle.
If only life were that simple.
This is a pipedream, to be blunt.
Gayle, as a proven performer in the second tier, would be a welcome addition – that goes without saying.
Grabban, though, is more than useful himself if used the right way and given suitable service.
If Forest can get him firing, while bringing in competition and assistance around him, then the collective will be stronger.
Maybe there is a deal to be done for Gayle, another loan perhaps, but the chances of delivering on Burns’ transfer dreams are slim to say the least.