If the winds of change are to sweep through the Nottingham Forest this summer, then who should be sweating on their future?

Regardless of where the Reds finish in the current campaign, another renovation project is being readied.

Not a complete rebuild, more a freshening up.

The City Ground is preparing for a long overdue face lift, and the playing staff may get the same treatment.

Comings and goings are inevitable.

If Forest were to make the play-offs, and ultimately the Premier League, then reinforcements would be essential.

The same is true, though, if a 20-year wait for top-flight football is extended.

By the time the next window of opportunity swings open, Martin O’Neill will be ready to dive through it.

Appointed mid-season and with only a few weeks in which to make winter additions, the Reds boss has had to make do to this point.


(Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

The obligatory ‘putting his own stamp on things’ awaits.

There is, however, the hope that the finer details of that project will be delayed for as long as possible.

If they are to be drawn up on the back of a last day showdown with Bolton on May 5, then something has gone wrong.

And the price for that will be paid.

Reds legend Garry Birtles has said in the Nottingham Post: “If we don’t get into the play-offs, then Martin has got a big job to go through the squad.

“It’s quite big so I’m sure there will be a few released.  He’s got to look at getting it right for next season, then take it from there

“That’s Plan B. But for me, at the moment, Plan A is still getting into the play-offs.

“Even if, worst case scenario, we don’t get to the play-offs, there is still a lot to look forward to next season.

“But for me, Plan A is still to give everything we’ve got to get that sixth spot.”



That mindset is shared by everyone connected with the club.

What, though, if those best laid plans unravel?

If Plan B becomes more prominent, then who could find themselves on borrowed time?

None of those whose permanent contracts are expiring are likely to be kept on, while most of the loanees will probably depart as well.

Jack Colback would be welcomed back with open arms, and potentially Sam Byram if he can prove his fitness, but would any of the others?

Then there are those currently taking in loan spells elsewhere.

Out of sight and out of mind or ready to be welcomed back?

Any of those currently on the fringes of the first-team fold could also be considered vulnerable, with Forest needing to free up space across the field for any new arrivals.

Some senior figures may discover that their faces no longer fit, with a busy summer seemingly on the cards one way or another.

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