That is according to a report from Lancashire Telegraph, who claim that Steve Cooper’s side are in the race to sign Rothwell and face competition from Bournemouth and Sheffield United.
As per the report, Rothwell is “expected to receive offers” from all three aforementioned sides, with the 27-year-old available on a free this summer after running his contract down with Rovers.
The latest news around Rothwell’s availability this summer will be music to the ears of Forest boss Cooper, who faces uncertainty over Manchester United loanee James Garner’s future.
With Erik ten Hag’s arrival at the club and understanding of youth integration having been at Ajax, he may opt to give Garner a chance to shine in the United first-team.
It will come as good news for a player who has had to prove himself across a two year period at the City Ground, but will spell bad news for Forest and will consequently leave a gaping hole in the Tricky Trees’ engine room.
As such, Rothwell can be the man to fill that void and will make for an astute signing, bearing in mind the numbers he has produced over the last few seasons and ability to sign him on a free.
Since his arrival at Blackburn Rovers in 2018, Rothwell has proven his solidity in the centre of the pitch and has been a key man, making 33 appearances or more in the Championship in each of his four seasons at the club.
This season has seen the 27-year-old, who has scored 25-goals across his career, reach a new level, with his end product elevating to a total of 13 attacking returns in 41 appearances – his best ever return in a season that has seen him bag three and assist ten.
Like Garner, Rothwell, who has been dubbed an “engine” by journalist Jaquob Crooke, is comfortable playing anywhere in the spine of the team and has had a similar impact to what the 21-year-old has at the City Ground, with the United loanee scoring four and assisting eight.
Positionally they are the same, they share similar offensive participations and are key men in their respective teams, featuring over 40 times in the Championship this season.
Cooper may have an easy fit in United youth graduate Rothwell, who can replace another United youth graduate in Garner at Forest.