Nottingham Forest may give homegrown right-back Jordan Gabriel another chance next season amid doubts over Cyrus Christie’s future.
Christie has made 28 starts at right-back for the Championship Reds on loan from Fulham this season.
But the full-back, 28, is out of contract this summer and can command a hefty salary as a free agent.
Forest are unsure if they can afford Christie, who could yet be kept on by the Cottagers if they are relegated.
But Forest have been encouraged by Gabriel’s displays on loan at Blackpool where Reds boss Chris Hughton is monitoring him after his predecessor Sabri Lamouchi sent him out.
The 22-year-old has made 17 appearances and scored once for the League One Seasiders since being loaned out after playing in Forest’s first two games this season.
Christie played 24 times in Fulham’s rise to the Premier League last season and started both play-off semi-finals before coming on as sub in the final against Brentford.
But he was loaned out this season after Fulham signed Dutch international defender Kenny Tete.