Yohan Benalouane recently praised the Nottingham Forest supporters for frequently filling the stadium and providing a memorable atmosphere, but it was his comments made about his reasons for joining the club that might have many worried about his long-term future at the City Ground.
The 32-year-old said he made the switch from Leicester to Forest to help them get promoted, so does that mean his stay depends on this season’s success?
He said to the official club website: “I came here for promotion. We have a really good manager and the team is really good with a lot of good players.”
“I came here and obviously the reality is that we are not in the Premier League, we are in the Championship, but wow. The stadium is always full and when we go away the fans are always there. I am proud to be here, I am happy and I want to go up with this club.”
Benalouane signed an 18-month deal in January and has gone on to make 10 appearances in all competitions, scoring one goal. The Tunisian international has made 59 clearances, has blocked six shots, won 54 aerial duels (68%) and has averaged a tackle (8) or interception (26) every 26 minutes.
He’s played alongside Alexander Milosevic and Molla Wague and has been an impressive signing, but whether he would stay at Forest if they didn’t go up this season remains to be seen. The Reds are currently 11th in the Championship with 54 points from 38 games, three points adrift of the playoffs.
Benalouane took a step down from the Premier League because he was struggling for playing time, but it’s unknown if he’s really open to playing a full season in the Championship after this one.
Crippy Cooke’s previous article