Nottingham Forest were linked with lots of players during the summer, with Brighton defender Shane Duffy one of the more bizarre links.
During the close season, the Reds had Joe Worrall, Scott McKenna, Tobias Figueiredo and Loic Mbe Soh all competing for places.
Signing another central defender didn’t make a deal of sense; especially given Chris Hughton typically played two, leaving two in reserve on the bench.
It wasn’t only the stockpiling of players in a pretty replenished position that worried Forest. Duffy was coming on the back of a pretty woeful season with Celtic, where he’d been part of a team that relinquished their crown to Rangers.
At 29, the centre-back hardly seemed like a long-term option either. Ultimately many Forest fans felt that Hughton was making a big mistake in pursuing the experienced performer.
An interesting development has taken place since the summer though, with Duffy now a pretty integral part of the Brighton team under Graham Potter.
He has played 12 games for the Seagulls during 2021/22 and has earned a reprieve under the burgeoning manager.
Duffy has been excellent when called upon and he’s arguably been the surprise package of Brighton’s campaign so far.
Should Forest have tried harder for Duffy?
Probably not, but it’s perhaps proof that any potential targets shouldn’t be written off before a ball has been kicked.
Certain clubs suit certain players and perhaps Duffy was on a hiding to nothing at Celtic during the 2020/21 campaign.
The centre-back has bags of experience at Championship level and also made 107 appearances in the Premier League.
Worrall and McKenna are arguably the best central defensive partnership and perhaps that’s one reason why Forest chose not to add another centre-back.
Duffy earns £45,000-a-week at the AMEX Stadium and as a result, he wouldn’t have been a cheap signing for Forest.
Few supporters would want Duffy ahead of McKenna or Worrall but the Brighton man is at least proving with his current form that the summer link wasn’t such a strange one.