Nottingham Forest head coach Steve Cooper has given an update on the fitness of Rodrigo Ely to Nottinghamshire Live.

The 27-year-old is yet to feature in a squad since making a free transfer to the City Ground back in September.

A debut is edging closer, however, with Ely pencilled in to play for the under-23 outfit at Meadow Lane on Monday.

Forest’s young guns are enjoying a pretty decent start to life in Premier League 2 and they’ll be boosted with some experience next week.

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Ely has suffered a number of setbacks since checking in at Forest. Now, he looks to be on the mend though and Cooper appears happy.

He told Nottinghamshire Live: “Rodrigo will play next Monday for the under-23s. That’s an important step for his return to play because he’s been out for a long time and has had a couple of setbacks.

“He’s trained for a couple of weeks now. It will be good for him to play on Monday; it’s a game I will be at too.

“He’s been really unfortunate really.”

Ely return could be timely for Forest

The Reds are down to the bare bones when it comes to central defenders; particularly with Cooper utilising three all at once in the starting eleven these days.

Having one on the bench would allow the Reds to mix things up a bit and would bode well ahead of a big period of games for Forest.

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Ely has bags of experience having spent time with AC Milan and Alaves and he could prove a decent addition to the ranks.

Cooper appears to have given a clean slate to everyone and it’s perhaps interesting that he will be at the under-23 game on Monday.

Ely will want to start making his mark on things on Trentside and Monday needs to be the catalyst for him to prove himself.

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