The international break provided Nottingham Forest boss Sabri Lamouchi with the chance to return to his homeland.
A trip to France didn’t stop him taking in a football match though and the Forest boss was spotted at Marseille’s game with Lyon at the Stade Velodrome.
The game finished in a 2-1 win to the home side with ex-West Ham star Dimitri Payet netting a brace. Former Celtic star Moussa Dembele netted for Lyon but his goal proved nothing more than a consolation.
Forest recently appointed Jose Anigo as the Head of International Recruitment. He has held several positions at Marseille including the first-team head coach.
It is unsure whether Lamouchi’s trip to Marseille was a scouting mission. Given the world-class talent on display, it seems unlikely but nonetheless, a couple of players could have been at the focus of his attention.
Nottingham Forest News looked at three players who Lamouchi might have checked in to check out at the Stade Velodrome:
Ake was an unused substitute during the contest but Lamouchi might have been hoping for a glimpse of the French youngster.
Forest are in need of another striker and Ake can operate on the wing or as a striker.
The 18-year-old has made his first four appearances for Marseille’s first-team this season and Anigo could well tap into his contacts at the club to pursue Ake.
The France under-19 international has come through the ranks at Marseille and a loan move wouldn’t be completely beyond the realms of reality.
The 16-year-old was introduced as a substitute in the Stade Velodrome and is an highly-rated Lyon prospect.
The man who typically plays as a number 10 has been a revelation for Lyon in the UEFA Youth League during the last 12 months, scoring five goals in nine appearances.
Some injury concerns have seen Cherki on the bench for the first-team in recent weeks but his long-term future isn’t cemented with the senior ranks just yet.
Cherki came on for 33 minutes against Marseille and Lamouchi will have been impressed with his composed performance.
The Tunisian performer is a former team-mate of Forest goalkeeper Brice Samba.
He only signed for Marseille during the summer but has been struggling to force his way into Andre Vilas-Boas’ team.
The 24-year-old is yet to start a game for the French outfit. If the boss wants to strengthen his squad in January, he might allow Khaoui to leave on loan.
Typically a versatile attacking midfielder; the man with 15 caps for Tunisia has played just 62 minutes of football all season.