Nottingham Forest are busy pursuing fresh faces in the January transfer window.

It could, however, be that a familiar one offers some of the best value to the Reds.

Back in August, Aitor Karanka raided the ranks at West Ham for Sam Byram.

The former Leeds man, with plenty of Championship experience to his name, moved to the City Ground on a season-long loan.

He was considered to be quite a coup and his early showings suggested the 25-year-old would be just that.

Just three games into his Forest career, though, all too familiar injury woes struck.

Byram was in the process of showcasing his obvious worth during a Carabao Cup clash with Newcastle when quite literally cut down in his stride.

After 234 minutes of action, Byram was back on the treatment table.


(Photo by Alex Morton/Getty Images)

A knee problem picked up on September 29 has kept the buccaneering full-back out of action ever since.

Much to his relief, a return date is now fast approaching.

That could play nicely, and rather timely into Forest’s hands.

Tendayi Darikwa has made the most of his opportunity to fill a right-back berth, but questions remain of a Nottingham native.

While there can be no doubting his enthusiasm and industry, he can shred the nerves a little at times.

Byram, on the other hand, is an accomplished and polished performer.

It is not difficult to argue that he is stronger than Darikwa heading in both directions on the field.

Going forward he provides a useful attacking outlet with his width and crossing ability – which has been an issue for the Reds at times.

And on the back foot, his pace and positional sense makes him a formidable foe.

Karanka acquired Byram with the intention of benefiting from his ability and experience in a promotion push.


That can still be the case.

Forest have issues to address in defence, with leaks being sprung, and further tweaks are expected.

They already have a quality right-back on their books though and can soon let him back off the lease.

Given that Byram is already adjusted to life on Trentside, he could prove to be a welcome winter addition.

If the Reds can get him firing, and free of any fitness fears, then there are considerable gains to be had.

Just imagine Byram and Matty Cash in tandem down the right and the energy they would bring to the side.

That possibility could soon become reality.

Forest need to bolster the ranks over the coming weeks, and will hopefully do so, but one deal done several months ago could end up bringing unexpected January benefits.

Related Topics