Nottingham Forest centre back Joe Worrall sent Reds fans into hyperdrive last night when he revealed that Joao Carvalho could have a big role next season.
Carvalho is currently on loan at Almeria, but is still tremendously popular among large parts of the Forest fanbase and many want him back.
There is an option to buy in Almeria’s loan contract, but it largely depends on whether they secure promotion or not.
However, Worrall seems to think he may be coming back anyway and said that he could be “massive” next year.
As part of the EFL Day of Action, Worrall was part of a video call with a fan called Kevin, who is involved in the Forest Forces programme.
This is part of the Nottingham Forest Community Trust and supports veterans “to lead more healthy and connected lives.”
Kevin made a comment about Brennan Johnson returning and how exciting it was, which Worrall agreed with, before the defender sent fans into rapture.
“It’ll be interesting as well because we’ve got Carvalho – Joao – he’s got to come back from his loan,” Worrall said in the call.
“And he’s somebody who can be massive for Forest in the future.”
Carvalho is Forest’s club record signing and immediately made an impact for the club under Aitor Karanka, before a change in manager changed his fortunes.
Under Martin O’Neill, Carvalho was dropped for no real reason and this led to serious conflict between the supporters and O’Neill.
Then under Sabri Lamouchi, he didn’t fit in the Frenchman’s tactics and was loaned before Chris Hughton could arrive.
In that first season though, Carvalho got 12 G/A – four goals and eight assists – in 2558 minutes (28 starts, 10 sub appearances).
For context, both Mason Mount (at Derby County) and Jack Grealish (at Aston Villa) got one more G/A than Carvalho, but in significantly more time.
Mount got nine goals and four assists in 3321 minutes (38 starts), while Grealish got six goals and seven assists in 2999 minutes (34 starts).
It’s clear that Carvalho is a very good player, but has just been misused at Forest and Worrall has delighted fans on social media at the prospect of him returning.
How important could Joao Carvalho be for Nottingham Forest next season?