According to Mark Hendry of The Sun, Nottingham Forest have fresh competition in their pursuit of Lawrence Shankland, with Sunderland entering the race for his signature. The 23-year-old is expected to leave Ayr United this summer, but his next destination is unknown.
Shankland has been a standout performer for Ayr, scoring and creating 85 goals in 73 games in all competitions, but he’s outgrown the Scottish Championship side and is looking for a new challenge in 2019/20. Forest are one of many clubs interested, but Sunderland may be hoping to hijack any deal.
Martin O’Neill may need another striker in the Forest squad if Hillal Soudani is sold to Olympiacos. The likes of Jason Cummings, Zach Clough and Apostolos Vellios are on the periphery at the City Ground and are expected to be offloaded. That would leave the Reds with Lewis Grabban, Daryl Murphy, Karim Ansarifard and Tyler Walker next season.
Goals have been hard to come by for Murphy and Ansarifard in 2019, however, with the pair scoring only four goals between them in the last five months, so a new face in attack might be beneficial. Forest will have to battle a number of Football League sides to bring Shankland to the East Midlands, but they’re one of the best clubs showing interest.