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Nottingham Forest closing in on swap deal that will bring James McClean to the City Ground - report

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James McClean. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

James McClean. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

James McClean. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

New Nottingham Forest manager Martin O'Neill is making a move for James McClean, according to a report

The former Republic of Ireland boss is determined to strengthen his panel after taking charge at the City Ground and, according to the Mirror, is trying to offload Ben Osborn to Stoke in return for Republic of Ireland winger McClean.

Stoke shelled out £5m for the 29-year-old just last summer and will have to be content with the deal to let him move on so soon into a four-year contract.

The former Derry City star has yet to start under new Stoke boss Nathan Jones but has more of a rapport with Forest's new man at the helm. Jones recently spoke of his need to 'streamline' his squad, admitting that there are 'too many players' at the club.

McClean and O'Neill, of course, worked together for five years at Ireland but were already well acquainted by then.

O'Neill had given the former Derry City winger his debut in English football, promoting McClean to the first team in his very first game in charge of Sunderland back in December 2011 - a 2-1 win over Blackburn in the Premier League.

O'Neill now has Roy Keane beside him in the Forest dugout, after the Manchester United legend was announced as the club's new assistant manager on Monday.

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