Nottingham Forest end their 2018/19 Championship campaign against Bolton Wanderers this weekend at the City Ground.
Martin O’Neill’s side secured back-to-back victories against Queens Park Rangers last weekend. This ensured that they can still finish as high as ninth this season.
The Reds currently find themselves eight points off the top six, with Derby County occupying the final spot. It’s fair to say there is a sense of disappointment around the club that the Reds haven’t been able to make it.
It’s difficult to predict exactly how the Trotters will play, mainly due to all of the off-the-field issues which have been well-documented this week.
Even though the Reds lost four games in a row not so long ago, they will still be huge favourites to win this match. The Reds have been far better at the City Ground than they have away from home.
Ahead of tomorrow’s game, Seat Pitch has taken a look at three players that the Reds will have to keep an eye on if they are to secure the three points. These players may have one eye on a move away from the Macron Stadium this summer. If so, they may view this match as an opportunity to put themselves in the shop window.
He may be 35-years-old, but Gary O’Neil is still showing that he has the ability to perform at this level. He was awarded the club’s Player of the Season award earlier this week, which is testament to how much he is appreciated by his fanbase. Without his experience in the dressing room, it may have been even worse for the Trotters this season.
Thank you to everyone that voted for me… I was pleased I promise… 😊
Tough season for everyone involved!!! Next year will be better I’m sure! #bwfc
See you on Sunday 😊 https://t.co/01ZityxNEV
— Gary O’Neil (@Gazoneil) May 3, 2019
The midfielder has a wealth of experience having previously played for the likes of Portsmouth, Middlesbrough, West Ham United and Norwich City. His influence could be huge next season if the Trotters are looking to make an immediate return to the Championship.
There’s no doubt that Josh Magennis has been one of the shining lights in a tough season for the Trotters. It hasn’t been the 28-year-old’s most productive season, but he has still out-performed his teammates. He is currently the club’s top scorer having found the back of the net seven times in the Championship this season. He has also picked up two assists.
Having spent £200,000 on the striker just under a year ago, it’s unlikely that the Trotters would be willing to sell him for any less this summer. He has shown that he has the ability to find the back of the net in this division. It wouldn’t be surprise if another Championship side took a gamble on him and placed a bid. If nothing materialises, then Magennis could be a key player for his side in League One.
Having been linked with the winger a few months ago, Sammy Ameobi is a player that Reds supporters will be aware of. The 6ft 4in forward is a handful for any Championship defence to deal with. He’s arguably Bolton’s highest-valued player at present. Despite the fact he still has a year left on his contract, the Trotters are likely to cash-in on him this summer.
He’s undoubtedly been one of the standout players at the Macron Stadium this season. He has racked up four goals and three assists. That isn’t a bad return for a winger playing in a side struggling at the wrong end of the division. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see him still playing in the Championship next season.