Gboly Ariyibi appeared to make a thinly-veiled insult towards Aitor Karanka for his lack of opportunities at Nottingham Forest, admitting that he’s had to leave on loan because playing time “didn’t come”. The 23-year-old recently joined Motherwell until the end of the season after failing to make an appearance in the Forest first-team this campaign.
Since joining the Reds from Chesterfield in January 2017, Ariyibi hasn’t featured in the senior squad once. The USA u23 international has been loaned out to MK Dons and Northampton Town and will now be at Motherwell for five months. He’ll hope to impress enough to stand a chance of playing for Forest, but that seems unlikely as he’s largely been exiled for two years.
He told The Herald (h/t Nottinghamshire Live): “Football is about opinions and I’d have liked more opportunities at Nottingham Forest, but they didn’t come and I’ve tried to get the experience and go on loan and get games which is important for me in my career right now.”
Karanka wasn’t the first Forest manager to overlook Ariyibi, but he worked with the winger for a year without ever giving him a chance in the first-team. Ariyibi returned from MK Dons after Forest appointed Karanka in January 2018 and was quickly shipped to Northampton.
Whether the winger can impress new manager Martin O’Neill next season remains to be seen. His deal at the City Ground still has 18 months to run.