Why Nottingham Forest should now worry about losing Joe Lolley more than ever

Joe Lolley of Nottingham Forest during the FA Cup Third Round match between Chelsea and Nottingham Forest at Stamford Bridge on January 5, 2019 in London, United Kingdom.

Lolley was signed by Aitor Karanka and prospered under his tutelage. With the Spaniard gone, will the Reds ace follow suit?

Bailey Peacock-Farrell of Leeds United saves a shot from Joe Lolley of Nottingham Forest during the Sky Bet Championship match between Nottingham Forest and Leeds United at City Ground on...

Nottingham Forest are looking for a new manager after parting company with Aitor Karanka on Friday.

The 45-year-old, who was appointed in January 2018, has left the City Ground with the Reds seventh in the Championship table.

A club statement said Karanka "asked to be released from his contract", with Forest agreeing to his request.

News of the Spaniard's departure has yielded criticism among some Reds fans, as seen in the Twitter comments underneath the club's statement.

 

When a manager leaves, particularly one that seemed to be so well-liked among the fanbase, it will always be a deflating feeling.

However, could Karanka's exit have a knock-on effect in terms of players' futures at the City Ground - in particular, that of one of the club's key men?

Joe Lolley was signed by Karanka just a year ago for an undisclosed fee, the winger struggling for game time at Huddersfield Town ahead of arriving at NG2.

In the space of 12 months, he has flourished under the manager and is currently sitting on seven goals and eight assists from 31 appearances this term (Transfermarkt).

Joe Lolley of Nottingham Forest battles for possession with Aiden O'Brien of Millwall during the Sky Bet Championship match between Millwall and Nottingham Forest at The Den on December 29,...

Overall, Lolley's record at Forest is of 10 goals and 11 assists in 47 appearances, impressive by any standards, and by this point, Transfermarkt's £450,000 valuation of him from September appears somewhat outdated.

In comparison, Lolley scored 11 goals at Huddersfield in 91 games, and claimed just four assists, which proves just how far he's come under Karanka's tutelage, but now the Spaniard has left, could this put doubts in the 26-year-old's head regarding his future at Forest?

Already Lolley has been linked with Premier League clubs such as Crystal Palace (Daily Mail) and Bournemouth (Teamtalk), and now that the manager that shaped him into the player he is today is no longer at Forest, not to mention the Reds' faltering playoff hopes, could this all lead to a decision that his future lies away from the City Ground?

Nottingham Forest's Manager Aitor Karanka during the Sky Bet Championship match between Nottingham Forest and Leeds United  at City Ground on January 1, 2019 in Nottingham, England.

Have something to tell us about this article?

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch