Nottingham Forest are looking to sign AS Monaco midfielder Pelé on loan, according to two reputable journalists.
— Antonis Oikonomidis (@antoikonomidis) January 30, 2019
— Paul Taylor (@nottmtails) January 30, 2019
Speculation has mounted, though, that Pelé is now close to securing a move to England to join the Reds and boost their chances of securing a place in the Championship play-offs.
Here, Seat Pitch takes a closer look at the Ligue 1 midfielder.
What’s his background?
There’s no doubt that Pelé is a player of significant pedigree. The fact that Wolves were reportedly willing to pay £9 million for his services in the summer shows that he must have something about him. It just seems that things haven’t quite worked out for him since making the move to Monaco.
He began his career at Belenenses, but it wasn’t until he returned to the club on loan from AC Milan that his career started to take off. Having helped Belenenses qualify for the Europa League, he caught the eye of Portuguese giants S.L. Benfica.
However, he failed to make a single first team appearance at the Estádio du Luz, spending his time at the club out on loan at Paços Ferreira and then Feirense. This resulted in him leaving to join Rio Ave on a five-year deal in June 2017.
Pelé made a significant impact in the one season he spent at the club. He scored seven league goals in 38 appearances, helping them achieve qualification to the Europa League qualifying rounds.
Therefore, it wasn’t a surprise when numerous top clubs were interested in him over the summer. Wolves manager Nuno Espírito Santo was very interested in signing him, according to the Daily Mail. However, he eventually snubbed the newly-promoted side in favour of a move to Monaco.
Internationally, Pelé has represented Portugal at Under-18, 19, 20 and 21 level, as well as Guinea-Bissau’s first team.
Why is Pelé on the move again?
Pelé hasn’t made the impact at the Stade Louis II that either he or the Ligue 1 club would’ve hoped for. After spending such a hefty fee to secure his services, he is not a player that Monaco were expecting to take time to settle. They were expecting instant performances.
After Fabinho’s £39 million transfer to Liverpool was confirmed in the summer, it was hoped that Pelé could fill his boots. This certainly hasn’t turned out to be the case.
He has made just 10 appearances for Monaco so far, failing to score a single goal. Only eight of these appearances have come in Ligue 1.
However, Monaco currently find themselves second bottom of the league following Thierry Henry’s recent dismissal. Could Pelé just have found himself in the wrong place at the wrong time?
In this case, Pelé may have the chance to prove his worth once again at the City Ground. He has previously spoken about his desire to play in the Premier League.
If he does comes in and help the Reds secure a place in the play-offs, he could well find himself in the top flight next season. This is what Martin O’Neill and the club’s hierarchy will be hoping for if they can get this deal over the line.