Nottingham Forest boss Steve Cooper will go into battle with Swansea in January for the loan signing of Brighton defender Haydon Roberts, according to The Athletic.
Roberts is a talented member of the Seagulls’ academy ranks and has played in all three of Brighton’s games in the Carabao Cup this season.
The teenager has also been on the bench in seven Premier League games and he’s highly rated by Graham Potter.
With Loic Mbe Soh currently injured, Forest are somewhat light at the back. If Cooper deploys three at the back there is little in reserve for Joe Worrall, Scott McKenna and Tobias Figueiredo.
Roberts would bolster the ranks in that sense and the Reds head coach knows all about the 19-year-old having managed him before.
The uncompromising player was in Cooper’s squad for the World Cup which the England under-17s won under the current Forest boss.
As a result, the Reds might have an edge over Swansea. Their boss Russell Martin has a similar approach to football as Cooper and it’s perhaps no surprise to see the two clubs target similar players.
Brighton boss Potter has raved about Roberts this season. He called his defender ‘really exciting’ when quizzed on the academy star by The Argus.
Forest could complete coup with Roberts capture
The landscape regarding transfers at Forest is unlikely to be much different from the summer. With that in mind, loans could be the order of the day once again.
Roberts is a talented central defender and Potter certainly sees him as a star of the future at Brighton.
Ben White was another Seagulls talent who thrived in the Championship and that might see the player keen to head to the second tier.
Cooper has managed him before and that could tempt him into selecting Forest over any other interested party.
Bolstering the defence could be a priority once the window opens in January and it looks as though Cooper and Dane Murphy are busy getting their ducks in a row.