By Danny Wright

27th Aug, 2017 | 12:38pm

Championship contract rebel at top of Nottingham Forest shopping list - report

By Danny Wright

Brentford defender Harlee Dean has been made Nottingham Forest’s No 1 transfer target, according to a report.

The Nottingham Post claims that Dean, 26, is at the top of Mark Warburton’s shopping list as he looks to bring in a centre-back before the transfer window slams shut on Thursday.

It is understood that the Brentford defender has one year left on his contract at Griffin Park, but he is in no rush to extend it and could be available on a cut-price deal as he would be available for a free transfer next summer if he doesn’t extend his current contract.

He has since been stripped of the captaincy by manager Dean Smith despite playing in all of Brentford’s last three Championship fixtures, including Saturday’s 0-0 draw with promotion chasing Wolves.

Nottingham Forest are also said to have a number of options lined up if a deal for Dean fails to materialise.

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Arsenal teenager Krystian Bielik is reported to be one of defenders that Warburton may pursue if he fails to land a deal for the Championship contract rebel.

The Nottingham Post also reports that the Reds are lining up a third bid for Brondby goalkeeper Frederik Ronnow.

Football Insider Verdict

Forest could certainly do with some extra muscle in their defence and it seems that Warburton is willing to use his links back to Brentford to get his man. Dean is a solid centre-back who will no doubt walk straight into the Forest squad, but most importantly he brings leadership skills that are pivotal to a successful defence. Forest have a lot of young players in their squad and they need someone who is hardened in the Championship. With 121 appearances in England’s second-tier, Dean could be the man that will help the Reds overachieve this season and show the huge improvement the club has undergone with Warburton and owner Evangelos Marinakis on board.

In other Nottingham Forest news, Warburton has delivered an exciting transfer update.

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