Given that the last decade delivered Rafik Djebbour and Leo Bonatini at the City Ground, Nottingham Forest do not have to raise the January bar all that high in the 2020s.

The last decade delivered a rather mixed bag when it comes to winter striking recruits.

Said market is never easy to navigate, but the Reds did find themselves caught up in the crowds at various stages.

Amid the scramble for bargains in the New Year sales, Forest have been left scratching around in the bottom of the bargain bucket.

In truth, little value has been found.

Marcus Tudgay could, given some rather memorable exploits against Derby, be considered to have bucked the trend.

He did, however, depart three-and-a-half years after his 2011 arrival with a record of 11 goals in 64 games.

Darius Henderson, who was snapped up in 2013, also contributed the odd memorable moment.

Again, though, he left with only 11 efforts to his name – this time from 49 appearances.

The aforementioned pair are about as good as it gets.

Which isn’t saying much!


(Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

Sandwiched between the deals for Tudgay and Henderson, the familiar face of Marlon Harewood returned to Trentside in 2012.

He penned a short-term deal and bid farewell with no additions made to his previous haul of 55 goals for the Reds.

Moving on to 2014 and Djebbour remains one of the more curious deals ever completed by Forest.

He is certainly one of the most forgettable!

The Algeria international had been prolific in Greece and an agreement was reached with Olympiacos in the days before Evangelos Marinakis’ link between the two clubs.

He netted on his debut, before being subsequently dropped for an apparent lack of effort.

Forest tried and failed to get out of a permanent transfer agreement before cutting their losses and ripping up a contract after only eight games.

Ross McCormack fell one outing short of hitting that mark during his time in Nottingham.

The Scot was supposed by quite the coup when joining on loan from Aston Villa in 2017.

He wasn’t.

Despite having previously starred in the Championship for Cardiff, Leeds and Fulham, a spark had gone in a forward who mustered one solitary strike.

At least he found the target, which is more than can be said for the final entry on this list.


Leo Bonatini was acquired from Wolves by Martin O’Neill shortly after his arrival in January 2019.

The previous campaign had seen him net 12 times in a memorable title win at Molineux.

The Brazilian drew a blank across 159 minutes for Forest.

With that deal still fresh in the memory, and Rafa Mir having been another flop taken on loan from Wolves, we find ourselves in familiar territory.

The Reds are back in the market for another frontman.

Sabri Lamouchi is now calling the shots and, if you believe what you read, has drawn up a list of targets as long as his arm.

There is plenty of pedigree to be found in the endless rounds of speculation.

No deals as yet though.

The hope is that patience will be rewarded, with a proven performer required to compete with/partner Lewis Grabban, but it remains to be seen what the end result will be.

More loans or money spent? Experience of English football of foreign fancy?

Forest have been down all of those roads before, but consolation can be taken from the fact that the journey this time around cannot really be any worse than those endured in the recent past.

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