Nottingham Forest have not had the Premier League return the supporters would have dreamed of as the side have spent the majority of the season so far in the relegation zone due to their struggle for consistency on the pitch.
Steve Cooper will be frustrated that the World Cup break came when it did as the Tricky Trees started to find their feet in their last five fixtures ahead of the prestigious international tournament – picking up eight points from a possible 15.
Alas, the manager will be hoping that his team can come back after Christmas and pick up where they left off in the top flight when they head to Old Trafford for their clash with Manchester United after Christmas.
Forest made 22 signings over the summer spending an ambitious £150m to build a team that can compete at the highest level to retain the club’s Premier League status and establish themselves comfortably in the league, however, it hasn’t worked out as of yet.
Although a flurry of new faces at The City Ground was something the club was in desperate need of with so many players departing at the end of last season, many of those players who remained at the club were quickly overlooked as to what they could offer the team in the top tier.
One player who is quickly proving Cooper wrong whilst flourishing on loan with Toronto FC in the MLS is forgotten man Richie Laryea.
The talented 27-year-old was shipped off back to his native Canada this summer but has been proving the Forest boss wrong for not including him in his squad by displaying glimpses of his capabilities and talents in Toronto.
Over ten league appearances, the versatile full-back has registered three assists, created four big chances and tallied up a 91% pass completion rate, as well as averaging 1.3 key passes, 1.4 tackles, 1.2 clearances and 6.2 duels per game, proving that he is having a positive impact in both attacking and defensive play.
Not only that, Laryea shined in Qatar during his World Cup performance for Canada against Belgium and was the highest-rated (7.3) player on the team according to Sofascore.
Over his 74-minute performance, the Canadian talent had two shots on goal, made four key passes, won two tackles and completed 100% of his long balls and crosses.
Should Richie Laryea be given a chance at Forest?
With that being said, there is no doubt that Cooper has made a mistake by not giving Laryea the chance to be part of his Premier League squad this season but if they do manage to pull off survival this season the manager should consider reinstating him in the Forest back-line.