If Nottingham Forest really want to bring Sam Byram back to the club, then they need to act quickly.
The hope was that transfer talks would have been held long before now.
Maybe they have.
Perhaps the Reds have been knocked back.
Martin O’Neill could have turned his attention elsewhere.
Rumours of interest in Alan Hutton have resurfaced again in The Sun.
Are Forest looking towards alternative reinforcements at right-back?
Or is Hutton intended to complement and compete with Byram at the City Ground?
If the latter is the favoured option, then moves have to be made.
That is because a timely wake-up call has been delivered to the Reds.
According to the Daily Star, Byram is being offered up by West Ham in other deals.
It is claimed that the former Leeds man is being used as a makeweight in the Hammers’ efforts to land Salomon Rondon.
The Star claims ‘that West Ham offered the Baggies £10m in cash for Rondon, including two fringe players – believed to be Sam Byram and Jordan Hugill’.
An exit door being opened at the London Stadium is not a new development.
Byram is widely reported to be surplus to requirements at his current club.
That was the case when Forest were able to put a season-long loan agreement in place last summer.
Nothing has changed.
The situation was clear as the 2018-19 campaign came to a close.
O’Neill stated at that point, in the Nottingham Post, that he was planning to hold talks with those he wanted back.
He said: “Some of the players will go back regardless anyway, because their clubs may want them back.
“Other ones, I’ll have a little look at and see if there’s anything we can do.”
Byram had also left the transfer door ajar.
He said in the Post: “I need to play football and, you know, if Nottingham Forest offer me football next season, I would not turn that opportunity down.
“But I need to sit down in the summer with West Ham, because I do not know what their plans are for me.”
Their plans are to ship him out.
Forest, now more than ever, have seen that stance made abundantly clear.
How will they react to that?
Will Byram be lining up for the Reds against West Brom on the opening day of the 2019-20 season?
Or on the opposing team?