Bristol City should make a move for Chris Maxwell this month
According to Bristol Post, Bristol City are one of the clubs that will be considering a winter move for Preston North End shot-stopper Chris Maxwell in the January transfer window. The 28-year-old Maxwell has fallen down the pecking order at Preston and is currently playing back-up to Declan Rudd in Alex Neil squad. Last campaign, Maxwell was the first-choice goalkeeper at Deepdale.
Although he is yet to be capped by Wales, Maxwell has played for the Welsh national team at all levels from the U16. Last season, Chris Maxwell kept 12 clean sheets in 30 Championship games. He conceded 29 goals in the league as Preston narrowly missed out on the promotion play-offs.
This season, Maxwell has made only 11 appearances in all competitions so far. Eight of those have been in the Championship and a further three in the EFL Cup. The keeper has not started a game since being sent-off in the draw with Ipswich Town in November.
Struggling for game time at 17th placed Preston, Maxwell is open to a January move in search of regular first-team football. The Robins are among a host of clubs at home and abroad who are keenly following the proceeding at Preston (h/t Bristol Post).
Niki Maenpaa, a former Brighton keeper, is currently number one at Ashton Gate. Maenpaa has so far impressed with his performances this season. Youngster Max O’Leary is his No. 2 with Frankie Fielding enduring a disrupted season due to injury and illness although he is now deemed fit.
Regardless, Bristol City need to consolidate their promotion play-off qualification chances. The Robins are in dire need of bolstering their goalkeeping department this winter and Maxwell seems like a good choice.
Maxwell has an excellent passing range and can ping both long and short passes. He is also strong a strong shot-stopper, given his outstanding reflexes. He is an intelligent reader of the game can quickly sniff out opposition chances by rushing off his line.
A move to Bristol City would boost his chances of getting to Ryan Giggs’ Wales national team. With his contract expiring at the end of next season, Bristol City could manage to sign the ex-Fleetwood keeper at an affordable price this winter.
Bristol City signing this 27-year-old Aston Villa star would help them launch a successful promotion push
Bristol City Opinion: Signing Scott Hogan could be a decent piece of business for the Robins
According to Birmingham Live, Bristol City have been credited with an interest in Aston Villa striker Scott Hogan in the summer transfer window, with reports claiming that Robins manager Lee Johnson is looking to bolster his attacking options.
However, as the reports suggest, the Robins’ interest in the Salford-born forward is likely to resurface this summer, with the 27-year-old’s future at Villa Park still unclear, following the club’s promotion to the Premier League.
Hogan made just 6 substitute appearances for Aston Villa in the Championship in the first half of the previous campaign before moving out on loan to join Sheffield United in January.
The 27-year-old’s stint at Bramall Lane proved to be a fruitful one, as the Irishman contributed with 2 goals and an assist in 8 Championship outings to propel the Blades to the Premier League for the first time since 2006-07.
A youth product of Rochdale, Hogan featured for a multitude of non-league clubs, including the likes of Woodley Sports, Halifax Town, Ashton United and Hyde before returning to his boyhood club ahead of the 2013-14 season. Hogan netted 19 goals in 40 appearances in the 2013-14 campaign to propel Rochdale to a third-place finish third in League Two and his prolific form earned him a coveted move to the Championship with Brentford back in the summer of 2014.
It was at Griffin Park that Hogan rose to prominence and carved out a big reputation for himself in the Championship, scoring 14 goals in 25 appearances for the Bees in the first half of the 2016-17 season before being snapped up by Aston Villa in January 2017. A move to Villa Park, however, didn’t particularly work in his favour, and Hogan slipped down the pecking order at the club after finding the net on only 6 occasions in the 2017-18 campaign.
Hogan’s Villa career was probably over last season itself, and now that the Lions have secured promotion to the Premier League, it is highly unlikely that they would consider the 27-year-old as a viable option in the top-flight next season. Sheffield United were believed to be interested but the Blades too are looking at better striking options.
To put things into perspective, it won’t be a bad idea for Bristol City to offer Hogan an escape route this summer, although he is still under contract at Villa Park until 2021 and the Robins won’t be able to get their hands on him for free. The 27-year-old’s time at Aston Villa hasn’t been a fruitful one but his previous goalscoring exploits at Brentford should prompt Bristol to make a move for him.
Bristol City will be looking to go one step further in the Championship next season and secure a playoff spot after the Robins finished 8th last term and narrowly missed out on a top-six finish. While defensive reinforcements are likely to be a priority for manager Lee Johnson, following the departure of Lloyd Kelly to Bournemouth and loanees Jay Dasilva and Tomas Kalas to their parent club Chelsea, bringing in someone like Hogan would certainly bolster their attacking unit.
Famara Diedhiou hit 13 goals in the Championship last term, while Andreas Weimann was another key contributor with goals and assists up front. Matty Taylor and Jamie Paterson also chipped in with some valuable contributions but the Robins need a little bit more depth and quality in their attack to enhance their chances of securing a playoff spot next season.
It is true that Hogan won’t be much of an upgrade on Bristol’s existing options up front but the Robins might as well look at the 27-year-old as someone who could add a bit more experience and depth to their forward line. And, if he manages to rediscover the kind of prolific form that he showed at Brentford, the Robins could have a gem on their hands for a pretty reasonable price.
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All in all, the fans at Ashton Gate probably won’t be too excited to hear about the club’s links with Scott Hogan but signing the 27-year-old could prove to be a shrewd piece of business for the Robins.
Nottingham Forest would get closer to promotion by signing this 31-year-old for free even if Joe Lolley stays put
Nottingham Forest Opinion: The acquisition of Albert Adomah on a free transfer could be a massive coup for Forest
According to Bristol Post, Nottingham Forest and Bristol City are set to go head-to-head in a transfer tug of war over free-agent Albert Adomah this summer, with Millwall also believed to be interested in securing the services of the 31-year-old.
Adomah is currently a free-agent after being released by Aston Villa upon securing promotion to the Premier League. The Lions decided against keeping the 31-year-old Ghanaian as a part of their plans in the top-flight moving forward but Adomah is expected to have plenty of suitors this summer.
The Robins are open to the prospect of reuniting with their former player, while Adomah’s inclination to remain in the Midlands might give Forest the upper hand in this deal. (h/t Bristol Post)
The 31-year-old made a total of 42 appearances in all competitions this past season and scored 4 goals, as Aston Villa secured a return to the Premier League through the playoffs following a three-year exile from the top-flight.
Dean Smith showed a lot of faith in Adomah’s experience and abilities in the semi-finals and finals of the playoffs but the Ghanaian looks set to remain in the Championship next season after being shown the exit door at Villa Park.
Adomah played for Harrow Borough and Barnet before earning a move to the Championship with Bristol City back in 2010. The Ghanaian’s three-year stint at Ashton Gate proved to be a fruitful one and the jet-heeled winger racked up 17 goals and 29 assists in 136 appearances for the Robins in all competitions.
Adomah’s promise and potential attracted interest from Middlesbrough, who swooped for him in the summer of 2013. The prolific wide man made an instant impact at Teesside, accumulating as many as 12 goals and 6 assists in his very first season.
The Ghanaian finished with 26 goals and 19 assists for Boro in all competitions and fired the club to Premier League promotion before switching boats to join Aston Villa.
To put things into perspective, Adomah’s pace, trickery and eye for goal, coupled with his wealth of experience in the Championship should make him a lucrative proposition for Nottingham Forest, despite his advancing years.
The Ghanaian might be 31 but he is still good enough to be a potent threat in the second-tier, and an eye-watering tally of 61 goals and 62 assists in 372 career appearances in the Championship should be enough to prompt Martin O’Neill to make a move for him.
Forest spent heavily in the transfer market last summer to bring in some high-profile players from foreign leagues but a 9th-place finish in the Championship was all that the club could manage.
The paymasters at the City Ground would have hoped for the club to secure a playoff spot after spending a fortune but that wasn’t quite the case, and now Forest need to adopt a more sensible and measured approach in the summer window.
Keeping that in mind, Albert Adomah is someone who could possibly offer good value for money and snapping him up for free might as well prove to be a masterstroke from O’Neill.
Joe Lolley and Lewis Grabban were the key contributors with goals and assists up front this past season but Forest need to find replacements for the likes of departing loanees Gil Dias and Diogo Goncalves.
Another big-money recruit Hillel Soudani struggled with injuries and failed to make much of an impact, and with Lolley attracting plenty of interest from the Premier League, Forest might find themselves in big trouble should the winger depart City Ground this summer.
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Even if Lolley stays put, Forest should go all out in their pursuit of Albert Adomah, given that the Ghanaian’s know-how and experience could go a long way towards helping the club secure a long-awaited promotion next term.
Aston Villa’s pursuit of this 24-year-old star from rivals would turn their defence into an unbreachable force
Aston Villa Opinion: Why the Villans should make a move for Adam Webster?
According to a report from The Sun, newly-promoted Aston Villa are interested in signing Bristol City centre-half Adam Webster.
Adam Webster, 24, only joined Bristol City from Ipswich Town last summer as a replacement for Aden Flint and mightily impressed under the guidance of Lee Johnson. In fact, he won Bristol’s player of the year award after making 47 appearances for the Robins in all competitions and forming a solid defensive partnership with Tomas Kalas last season.
The tall centre-back’s performances certainly haven’t gone unnoticed, with a host of English clubs interested in his signature, including Aston Villa. But should the Villans make a move for Webster this summer?
Villans have been very busy in the summer transfer window after achieving promotion to the top-flight via play-offs.
They have signed Wesley Moraes for a record £22million from Club Brugge and acquired the services of Jota from Birmingham City, with Gary Gardener going the other direction, whilst complementing the permanent signings of Anwar El Ghazi and Kortney Hause from Lille and Wolves respectively.
Dean Smith is putting more emphasis on strengthening his backline following the departures of loanees Axel Tuanzebe and Tyrone Mings—the duo who had formed a rock-solid partnership at the back during the promotion success.
The Villa manager is keen to bring back Tuanzebe and Mings, but the former is expected to be involved in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s pre-season games at Manchester United while Bournemouth are reluctant to let go of Mings for cheap.
And regardless of Smith signing Hause permanently, there remain reservations over the fitness of the club’s senior centre-back, James Chester. With Tommy Elphick already been released, Villa are in need of more defensive reinforcements. Thus, signing Adam Webster from Bristol makes absolute sense.
Standing at 6ft 3in, Webster is a towering centre-half, known for his strength, power and aerial ability. The 24-year-old has showcased a level of maturity that most of the defenders in the Championship struggle to have in his age-group, both in terms of composure and decision-making.
Physically dominant and strong in the air, he also excels with his composure on the ball and tackling skills at the back.
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The ex-Portsmouth and Ipswich Town defender compensates his lack of pace and agility with game-reading skills. Due to his giant frame, Webster is also an asset to have at both ends of the pitch.
Webster has impressed in the Championship and looks more than ready for the step up. He is 24 and Aston Villa could have a gem on their hands if he goes on to fulfill his promise in the years to come.
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