With less than a week to go until the January transfer window slams shut, Samba Sow has been been linked with a surprise move away from Nottingham Forest.
The 31-year-old has been a key player for the Reds since arriving from Dinamo Moscow last season, and has been a regular under Chris Hughton thus far.
The midfielder has made 15 appearances for Forest across all competitions this season, but has been linked with a departure ahead of the transfer deadline.
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The Turkish press have linked Sow with a move to Buyuksehir Erzurumspor, who are said to be in negotiations with the combative midfielder.
Sow is out of contract at the end of the season, and if the club do not intend to extend his contract, we could see a departure materialise this month.
But what side-effects could Forest potentially feel if they sanction Sow’s exit? Here, we take a look at a couple…
Strength in depth
It seems remarkable how despite signing 14 players over the course of the summer, Forest still lack depth in midfield as it stands.
Cafu, Fouad Bachirou, Jack Colback, Harry Arter and Filip Krovinovic have all arrived at the City Ground over the course of the season, adding competition for the likes of Sow and Ryan Yates in the middle of the park.
But Yates is currently out injured, with the midfielder joining both Arter and Colback on the sidelines and leaving Forest short of options at the moment.
Loic Mbe Soh – a natural centre-half – played in midfield alongside Bachirou at the weekend, with the latter making his first appearance in over three months.
Whilst it may make sense to cash in on Sow this month if they do not intend to extend his stay at the City Ground, it may be a risky call given their lack of available numbers at present.
Dan Gosling has been linked with a move to the City Ground and could be seen as a potential replacement, but it remains whether a move happens.
Strength in midfield
Whilst Sow may be guilty of lacking temperament at times – typified by picking up six yellow cards this term – he is a player Forest miss whenever he doesn’t play.
Last season under Sabri Lamouchi, the Reds missed his physical presence and drive in midfield, and often found themselves on the wrong end of results whenever he was absent.
This season has been very much the same case. Sow isn’t the most technically gifted on the ball, but what he does bring is work-rate and tenacity, and an ability to break play up well.
He has endured a couple of frustrating injury problems since his arrival at the City Ground and really should have played more games, but he very rarely lets you down when he does step onto the field.