Nottingham Forest will be taking stock of their position in the Championship over the international break after what was a difficult month and they will aim to get back to winning ways when the season resumes.
Chris Hughton’s side managed to pick up an important point on Saturday holding Brentford to a 1-1 draw thanks to a second-half fightback.
It was a display that will provide a lot of positives to take forwards with them showing that they do have the quality to cause problems for one of the best sides in the Championship. However, it also showed they have work to do to win such matches.
The draw at Brentford means it is now six in the league without a win, since their 1-0 win away at Rotherham United. That leaves them seven points clear of the relegation zone with eight matches left for them to play. There will still need to be points put on the board to make sure they do not get dragged into the relegation scrap, but they should have enough quality to avoid that.
As we move into the international break, we have taken a look at some of the latest news around the City Ground…
Hughton offers message on potential future of the impressive James Garner
Forest will have one eye on the summer transfer window already even though their position in the Championship is not yet completely secure. Hughton has already suggested that the club are starting to assess potential targets they can pursue, as well as look to sort out the futures of out of contract players and also the ones they have on loan at the moment.
One of those loan players is Garner, who has been one of the Reds’ best performers since he arrived at the City Ground from Manchester United in the January window. The midfielder was once again in excellent form in the draw against Brentford and Hughton was keen to praise his quality after the game when addressing the impact he has made on the side.
While Hughton also suggested that Forest have a good relationship with Manchester United, but that he could not comment on whether that would mean that Forest are able to secure another loan move for Garner in the summer. You would imagine by these latest comments that if they can re-sign him it is something the club would pursue.
Joe Lolley delivers update on his injury recovery
One major thing that will be on Hughton’s mind is the condition of Joe Lolley, with the Nottingham Forest manager having confirmed that he is likely to now be out for the rest of the campaign after suffering a hamstring injury in the draw against Reading. That is a major blow for the Reds but it has given the chance for Alex Mighten to come back into the side and he impressed against Brentford.
Lolley took to Instagram to deliver an update on his situation and his post appears to reveal that he has undergone surgery on his injury as he looks to start his rehabilitation. He will now be hoping to return as soon as possible
The attacker has had a frustrating campaign where he has only been able to score one goal and provide one assist and has made just 16 starts in the league (Sofascore). He will need to get himself back fit and firing for pre-season so he can enjoy a better campaign next time around.
Chris Hughton offers assessment on Lewis Grabban’s potential future
Another issue that Hughton will be wanting to resolve heading into the summer is the potential future of forward Lewis Grabban. He has not been able to enjoy a prolific season in the Championship this term as he was last time around, with the 33-year-old managing just three goals in 20 Championship appearances (Sofascore).
However, speaking to The Athletic, Hughton revealed that he is expecting Grabban to be a part of the squad for next season as he aims to get the club competing nearer towards the top end of the division.
That suggests that he will not be going anywhere in the summer and that Forest can look to try and get him firing before the start of next term in the remaining games.