Chris Hughton insists that Michael Dawson was named on Nottingham Forest’s bench against Sheffield Wednesday due to injury reasons rather than sentimental reasons.
Dawson hasn’t made a single appearance for Forest this season, and the 37-year-old hasn’t been named in a matchday squad since the win over Wednesday back in December.
But on Saturday, Dawson was named in the matchday squad for a Championship fixture for only the ninth team this season, taking the last spot in the Reds’ 25-man squad.
Dawson didn’t make an appearance, with Forest keeping a clean sheet as they held Sheffield Wednesday to a goalless draw.
Speaking to Nottinghamshire Live after the game, Hughton revealed that Dawson was only named in the squad due to an injury to Tobias Figueiredo rather than for sentimental reasons.
He said: “Toby (Figueiredo) came back and trained, then just felt the injury slightly again.
“It was literally only yesterday that we made the decision to bring Michael into the squad.
“In all honesty, this was not the type of game for sentiment.
“It was a game against a team that needed to get a result. We had to show the correct respect to the competition, which I think we did with the way we wanted to perform.”
Dawson is out of contract at the end of the season, meaning that his second spell at the City Ground could well come to an end having failed to been involved this term.
The centre-half would leave the club having made a total of 118 appearances across two spells with the club.
I can’t see Dawson being offered a new deal, and realistically he may not even want a coaching role just yet.
Dawson has been doing a lot of punditry work for Sky of late, and for me, I think he will go down that route for the time being.
He has had an excellent player as a career, but like Hughton says, it’s about ending the season strongly and building relationships between players heading into next season.