Brennan Johnson may not be old enough to remember her father playing for Nottingham Forest, but he is carving out his own legacy at the City Ground.
David Johnson retired from football in 2007 after an impressive career as a striker, with Brennan only six years old at the time.
Fifteen years later, his son is set to take Forest to the Premier League and one of the most coveted players around.
The striker is wanted by Newcastle, Tottenham, Everton and Brentford.
So even if Forest do not win promotion in the play-off final against Huddersfield on Sunday, they will most likely be in the top flight next year after a stellar season.
The Wales international was born in Nottingham and grew up idolizing David Beckham.
He qualified to play for Wales through his mother’s family, who hailed from Rhayader.
Johnson was just five months old when Beckham scored that famous free-kick against Greece, but he wants to emulate his former hero with Walez’s red and help his country qualify for the World Cup.
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Beckham actually knows the Forest star’s father as they were both at Old Trafford at the same time.
And the former Man United and Real Madrid superstar has remained in constant contact with David and watched Brennan’s progress from afar.
The 21-year-old has been with Forest since he was eight years old and he progressed through the academy at the City Ground.
Eventually, after impressing for Forest’s youth sides, Sabri Lamouchi gave him his league, Carabao Cup and FA Cup debut.
Unfortunately, things didn’t work out for Lamouchi and he was sacked.
Chris Hughton arrived and Johnson was loaned out.
Now, that could have been a blow for a player who potentially thought he would be in the Forest first team last year.
But that loan move to Lincoln City under Michael Appleton proved to be the catalyst for his career.
He made 43 appearances for the Imps, in which he scored 11 goals and provided 13 assists, and Appleton was very impressed with him.
He said: “I would be amazed if there wasn’t more interest from the Premier League this summer – from three or four clubs, if not more.
“There were a few things that stood out with Brennan. He has pace and he’s very direct. Every time he received the ball, even on his back foot, he was looking to turn and always go forward. So many players these days choose to go square or back, but he always seemed positive.
“The biggest compliment I can give him is that I’ve used him in five different positions. We’ve played him either side of a striker, we’ve played him as a number 9, as a as many as 10 and even seven games where we’ve played him as a No.8 in midfield.
“We knew we had someone who is not only very talented and tough, but also someone who is very adaptable, smart and has the right attitude. He was always one of the two or three you would struggle with. to leave the training ground.
During that loan spell with Lincoln, Wales decided to act quickly and handed the striker his first cap.
The Dragons didn’t want England rushing or Johnson ending up in a similar situation to his father, as they tried to cap David in the 1990s only to find he was ineligible.
Since then Johnson has won nine caps for Wales and impressed Joe Ledley: “Brennan is a very exciting young player who is definitely ready to make the leap.
“He’s been fantastic for Nottingham Forest and you’ve seen what he’s capable of this season.
“I think Robert Page brought him into the squad at the right time. We’ll see if he starts but if he’s on the bench I’m sure he can get on the pitch and make an impact.
It could be a defining few weeks for Johnson, who can first help Forest into the Premier League and then take Wales to the World Cup.
However, following his return from that successful loan spell, Forest have had a dreadful start to the year.
Fortunately, Steve Cooper replaced Hughton and Johnson was a revelation.
He scored 18 goals and provided a further nine assists as Forest progressed to the Championship play-off final on Sunday.
Even Roy Keane was blown away by the Wales international when the Tricky Trees beat Arsenal in the FA Cup in January: “He’s a talented lad.
“No doubt a lot of teams are looking at him and we’ll see if Forest can hold him.
“I will be interested to see how he is against a tough team. It has a little rhythm and it is delicate.
Ultimately, the sky seems to be the limit for a player bound for the Premier League this summer, with or without Forest.
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