Reading are one of three Championship clubs interested in signing Peterborough United captain Chris Forrester, according to the Mirror.
The 24 year old signed for the League One club in the summer of 2015 after impressing for St. Patrick's Athletic in the League of Ireland, and has gone from strength to strength at London Road, particularly catching the attention in Peterborough's FA Cup tie with West Brom last season.
Speaking on the BBC's coverage of the game, Gary Lineker said:
“We’ve all been impressed (with Forrester). He’s got a delightful touch.”
But undoubtedly Forrester's biggest admirers come from within his club. Former Posh manager Graham Westley even compared the midfielder to Michael Carrick.
“There’s so much Michael Carrick in him it’s scary," Westley said in October 2015. You look at the likes of Carrick, an intelligent player, reads the game brilliantly well, owns, keeps and passes the ball in the right way – he’s got so many of the characteristics.
We’ve seen what he can do in terms of arriving in the box and scoring goals, we’ve seen his passing, he’s such a composed individual, he’s a cracking player.”
Forrester is currently uncapped by the Republic of Ireland, but was called up to Martin O'Neill's squad for friendlies against Switzerland and Slovakia last March. Despite this, Peterborough United chairman Darragh MacAnthony claims he is better than Irish international Jeff Hendrick, now playing in the Premier League with Burnley.
Better imo but Hendrick quality also but Chrissy will be better https://t.co/SCpWkvTGuG— Darragh MacAnthony (@DMAC102) 4 January 2016
When asked last January how much Peterborough would sell their skipper for, MacAnthony declared he was 'priceless', and after an impressive year, you would expect Reading would need to pay at least £5 million for Forrester.
Way way over. Best Mid passer/player I've ever signed & priceless. https://t.co/EIeyzv5v2c— Darragh MacAnthony (@DMAC102) 4 January 2016
Whilst at St. Patrick's he was seen as very much an attacking midfielder where he either played as a number ten behind the striker or a winger as he gained a reputation for scoring some sensational goals. However, he has been converted to a holding midfielder sitting in front of the back four at Peterborough.
This versatility is certainly something that would attract Reading, and with a lack of creative midfielders, Jaap Stam could perhaps deploy Forrester in a similar role to the one he played in Ireland.
So far in the 2016-17 campaign, Forrester has three goals and one assist in 23 league appearances as Peterborough sit seventh in the third tier at the time of writing. Brentford and Derby County are also keen to sign the 24 year old.