Chris Hughton has been dealt a blow to his hopes of bringing James Garner back to Nottingham Forest this summer.
That’s according to a report by Manchester Evening News, who claimed that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is planning on including the 20-year-old central midfielder in his first team squad at Manchester United ahead of next season.
It is believed that Hughton is keen to keep the £3.6m-rated England under-20 international at the City Ground this summer following his successful loan spell at the Championship side in the second half of last season.
Having only linked up with Forest in the January transfer window, Garner went on to prove a remarkable piece of business from Hughton’s side, with the midfielder quickly establishing himself as a first team regular at the Reds.
Over his 20 Championship appearances for the club, the youngster scored four goals, as well as averaging two tackles, 1.7 interceptions and 1.1 key passes per game, culminating in an impressive average WhoScored match rating of 6.98 – ranking him as Forest’s best performer in the second tier.
Indeed, Forest’s 62-year-old manager was certainly impressed with the midfielder’s performances for the Garibaldi, claiming that he has been “absolutely delighted” with Garner, as well as suggesting that “Manchester United know what we think of him” when asked about the potential of a return to Nottingham this summer.
However, it is not just Hughton who has been impressed with the 20-year-old’s talent, with United midfielder Fred also complimenting Garner’s “impressive vision of the game” as well as his “incredible” range of passing.
As such, if Ole Gunnar Solskjaer does indeed put the brakes on the midfielder leaving Old Trafford ahead of next season, it will come as a gutting blow to Hughton, who will have undoubtedly been hoping that Garner’s influence within his side could help fire Forest up the Championship table next season.