Nottingham Forest could now miss out on the signing of Renan Lodi, with Benfica opening talks with Atletico Madrid. Furthermore, it’s been suggested that the player now wants to play in the Champions League next season.
Lodi could now move to Portugal, according to Relovo. The 25-year-old signed for the Reds on a season-long loan from Los Rojiblancos last August and he became integral to the team’s fortunes.
On the final day of the 2022/23 campaign, Lodi appeared to wave an emotional goodbye to the travelling Forest fans after a 1-1 draw away at Crystal Palace. Just a week earlier, he’d been in tears after the Reds defeated Arsenal 1-0 at the City Ground.
Lodi clearly valued playing for Forest during last season. From the turn of the year, the Brazilian really kicked on and he was an invaluable member of the team as they staved off relegation.
The anticipation was that Forest would sign Lodi on a permanent basis. A £25 million clause was included in the loan to sign him, but the Reds allowed that to expire, believing they might be able to negotiate a cheaper deal.
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Now, that decision might look a little foolish. Benfica are preparing to pounce; with the Portuguese champions looking to bolster their squad ahead of their Champions League campaign next season.
Diego Simeone is a big fan of Lodi’s – even if he is going to sell him this summer. Previously he’s called him ‘committed’ and ‘humble’, with Lodi once a big part of his team.
Forest could now miss out on signing Lodi
This wouldn’t be a complete disaster and there is probably more to this choice than just football reasons. Perhaps, with a young family, they aren’t quite so keen to move to England as they would be to Portugal.
Lodi would have been a great signing to kick off the summer transfer window for Forest. However, other irons will be in the fire; whilst Harry Toffolo and the yet-to-be-seen Omar Richards remain at the club.
Forest might have to go back to the drawing board now. Although Toffolo is at the club, he’s largely viewed as a backup option and the Reds will almost certainly now go in search of another left-back this summer.