Last night saw Norwich City and Nottingham Forest battle out a fairly drab and inconsequential 0-0 draw at Carrow Road. After the game, after such little action on the pitch, the main story was that of a player missing from the game. Former Nottingham Forest forward Nelson Oliveira did not appear in the matchday squad for Norwich.
Speaking to the BBC after the game Norwich boss Daniel Farke explained this was down to a poor attitude in training from the Portuguese attacker:
“I didn’t have the feeling that Nelson was at his best this week – that’s the situation and why he wasn’t involved.
“It’s professional football and you have to deliver. When someone doesn’t deliver and they’re not there with 100% attitude I will do without them.”
Forest fans will no doubt see this as an opportunity, because bringing Oliveira back to the City Ground would be a welcome move.
The Portugal international joined Nottingham Forest on loan from Benfica in September 2015. He went on to have an impressive season with Dougie Freedman’s side. Oliveira scored nine goals for the club that campaign. His form even saw him initially look set for Euro 2016 with Portugal. An ankle injury prevented such an occurrence and Eder went instead, thankfully for Portuguese fans.
At the end of Oliveira’s first season in England Forest fans were clear that they wanted him signed permanently. He had become a popular figure for his natural ability and rapport with the Forest fans.
Norwich however beat Forest to it. In the summer of 2o16 the Canaries snapped him up on a permanent deal from Benfica, much to the chagrin of Nottingham Forest fans.
But seeing the forward having trouble with the manager at Norwich must surely give Forest fans hope they might welcome back their former number 17 again.
Aitor Karanka likes playing a player in the hole behind the striker and Oliveira can do that job with aplomb. Although not the most potent in front of goal, he is exceptionally talented and Forest fans are already huge fans.
If it turns out Oliveira is available in the summer Nottingham Forest would be made not to make a move.