Zach Clough would have been hoping for far more from his first full season in a Nottingham Forest shirt.
The 22-year-old promised much when signing from Bolton Wanderers for £3 million as recently as January and scored four times in 14 appearances for the club in the second half of 2016/17.
But it’s easy to forget that Clough was not a Mark Warburton signing. And since the current Forest boss was appointed at the City Ground in March, the former Trotters star has struggled to seize a consistent place in the starting XI.
Clough has only featured from the off three times so far in 2017/18 with Everton loanee Kieran Dowell getting the nod in the central playmaking position.
And, according to the Nottingham Post, former club Bolton will put an offer on the table to bring Clough back to the Macron Stadium in the January transfer window. It is understood that Bolton, who cannot afford Clough permanently because of their precarious financial situation, want to take their one-time fans’ favourite on a season-long loan.
But it appears that many Forest fans would be disappointed to see Clough depart on loan in January, believing that he has the talent to fight for a place in Warburton’s first XI.
While I'm happy we've got Dowell. No doubt he's quality and improves the side. But it does mean we have an expensive signing, quality young player in his own right in Clough. Whose development is being hurt while we develop someone elses player. #nffc— steve (@trickynffc) December 11, 2017
I think we should let Clough go to Bolton out on loan. It's not fair on him to let him sit around. If he does very well, he can come back with renewed confidence. #nffc— Hannah Forest ⚪️⚽️ (@hannahforest) December 11, 2017