Exclusive: Nottingham Forest line up defender bid

EXCLUSIVE By Pete O’Rourke

Nottingham Forest will rival Premier League duo Southampton and Burnley for the signing of Chesterfield youngster Dylan Hand, Football Insider sources understand.

Hand, 17, joined Chesterfield since last summer after being spotted playing for League of Ireland side Dundalk.

A well-placed source has told Football Insider that scouts from Southampton, Burnley and Nottingham Forest have been keeping regular checks on Hand.

The source explained they are ready to follow up their interest with bids for the Irish sensation.

Chesterfield would be loathe to lose one of their prized young assets, but they are bracing themselves for interest in Hand if he continues his rapid progress.

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The 17-year-old is highly regarded within the corridors of power at Chesterfield after catching the eye of the club’s coaching staff.

The talented defender has yet to make his first-team debut for Chesterfield, but he has impressed for the club’s youth and reserve sides.

Hand has yet to sign a professional contract at Chesterfield with his two-year scholarship deal due to end next summer and the news has alerted a number of his suitors.