West Ham United defender Reece Oxford had been linked with Nottingham Forest before joining FC Augsburg on loan in January.
The Reds would be paying for potential if they were to reignite their interest in the centre-back this summer.
The Daily Mirror broke the news over two months ago that the Reds were interested in signing the England Under-20 international in a deal worth up to £8 million. This is despite the fact that Martin O’Neill had already added Yohan Benalouane to his squad.
Despite also signing Alexander Milošević and Molla Wagué since then, O’Neill may be tempted to go back in for the youngster. Especially considering Wagué is only on loan from Udinese until the end of the season.
There’s no doubt that the 20-year-old still has the ability to become a top player. He would be welcomed to the City Ground with open arms by many.
As West Ham were willing to offload the centre-back in January, it’s unlikely that their standpoint will have changed over the last few months. But he certainly wouldn’t be a cheap addition. If he did cost £8 million, he’d become one of the club’s most expensive signings, behind the £13.2 million they paid for João Carvalho.
But the fact that the centre-back appears to be struggling to make an impact with FC Augsburg right now should perhaps put a seed of doubt in the club’s mind. Oxford has only made five appearances for the Bundesliga outfit. This wasn’t helped by the fact he was sent off in the latter stages of a 5-1 thumping by SC Freiburg.
In fact, he made his first appearance since February last weekend in a 4-0 defeat to TSG Hoffenheim. In the three other games he has started, FC Augsburg have conceded a whopping 12 goals. It certainly hasn’t been the most enjoyable period for the youngster.
Suddenly, it looks as though the Reds dodged a bullet by avoiding an £8 million investment in the defender.