Aston Villa midfielder Conor Hourihane could be allowed out on loan this month – and Nottingham Forest should be interested.
The Reds are desperately seeking some more creativity and the Republic of Ireland man is down the pecking order at Villa Park.
In Chris Hughton, Forest have a manager who has tried to sign Hourihane before.
Back in August 2017, Brighton were credited with an interest in the former Barnsley man by Birmingham Live.
A move never came to fruition and Hourihane became an instrumental part of Dean Smith’s team that won promotion during 2018/19.
During that campaign he scored nine goals and registered 12 assists as the Villans beat Derby County in the Play-Off Final.
He didn’t have a bad campaign during his first season playing top-flight football either.
His seven goals and five assists helped Smith’s men secure Premier League survival in their maiden season back in the top-flight.
This season has been a different story though.
Douglas Luiz and John McGinn have been in fine form in midfield and Hourihane hasn’t started a game.
Forest might need to move quickly to snare the Villa marvel on loan.
It has been claimed this morning that Swansea City are keen to take the 24-cap international on loan.
Given the Swans are in a lofty league position, Forest could already be fighting a battle they can’t possibly win.
That shouldn’t deter them from trying, however, with Hourihane exactly the type of player Hughton is currently lacking.
Hourihane earns £30,000-a-week at Villa and he wouldn’t be a cheap loan addition.
He does possess real quality, however, and he’d undoubtedly add something different to the City Ground ranks.
How likely is Hourihane to Forest?
Right now, it doesn’t seem overly likely.
Swansea look to be in the driving seat and their league position could be telling.
Hughton has also suggested that the majority of Forest’s business might not be done until the final week of January.
The Reds were guilty of not backing the manager last January and the club will want to avoid a similar situation this time around.
With a big squad, however, there is a need to be savvy in the market.
Hourihane would be a class addition though and if there’s a chance of him leaving Villa Park, Forest should be all over it.