Nottingham Forest forward Hillal Soudani is set to miss the remainder of the season through injury, according to DZ Football.
The 31-year-old joined the Reds in June from Dinamo Zagreb for an undisclosed fee. However, he’s been unable to make the impact he would’ve wanted to due to his struggles with injury. He’s only been able to make eight appearances so far, scoring twice.
The Algerian international suffered a relapse of his knee injury against Burton Albion in the Carabao Cup back in November. At the time, it was unknown how long he’d be out for.
According to DZ Football‘s report, Soudani is now unlikely to be seen at the City Ground until next season. Considering how little he has played, it won’t be seen as much of a blow.
Soudani would’ve been useful squad player
The Reds worked extremely hard to secure Soudani’s signature over the summer. Although his contribution was limited, he did show signs that he could prove to be a very useful squad player.
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He managed to score twice in just six Championship appearances under the management of Aitor Karanka. That isn’t a bad return for a player experiencing English football for the first time.
They were both important goals. His first came in the cagey win over Reading at the City Ground in August. He followed this up with another goal in the 2-2 draw at Wigan just a few weeks later, sparing Lewis Grabban’s blushes by scoring on the rebound following his missed penalty.
If it wasn’t for Grabban’s form, Soudani would’ve probably been given more opportunities by Karanka. He largely had to settle for brief appearances off the bench.
Despite this setback, Soudani is confident that he can come back a stronger player. He had surgery on his knee just a couple of weeks after he picked up the injury against Burton.
“Set your goals high and don’t stop until you reach them,” he wrote in a recent post on Instagram, which showed a picture of him working in the gym.
‘Another crock to add to the list’
In this case, Martin O’Neill could’ve really benefited from having Soudani available in the remainder of the season. Although he can play in numerous positions upfront, Soudani would’ve provided competition to the likes of Grabban and Daryl Murphy.
Soudani proved in the early stages of the season that he could come off the bench and make an impact. This is something the Reds have arguably lacked over recent weeks.
With the likes of Michael Dawson, Michael Hefele, Tobias Figueiredo and Sam Byram all out injured, the Reds could’ve done with some positive injury news such as Soudani recovering quicker than planned.