Nottingham Forest manager Dougie Freedman says everyone connected with the club must be patient with Andy Reid.The midfielder, whose last competitive match came in September 2014, made a long-awaited return to action by playing an hour for the Under 21s this afternoon.
But Freedman is cautious not to get carried away as the Irishman takes a step closer to full fitness.
The manager told Forest Player HD: “His condition is still a way off. We’ve got to be patient. We shouldn’t rush him no matter what the circumstances are.
“When you’re out for 11 months, especially at the age he’s at, it’s very difficult. He’s got the ability, he’s got a good attitude and, hopefully, after the international break we will see a fit Andy Reid.
“He’s a good guy, we get on very well, I’ve known him a long time. I just hope people are patient with him.
“It’s difficult for me as well. I’m desperate to get him back but we have to take into account his longer-term future.”
The Reds take on Reid’s former club Charlton Athletic tomorrow night and Freedman hopes Ben Osborn will be available for selection after the midfielder returned to training this morning following a stomach bug.
Charlton have enjoyed a strong start to the campaign, beating QPR on opening day and drawing at Derby on Saturday.
And while Freedman is fully aware of the threat Guy Luzon’s team possess, he is keen to see his team build on Saturday’s encouraging performance against Rotherham.
He said: “They’re an old fashioned 4-4-2 team who leave two strikers very high up the field and have two banks of four that play very deep. We need to make sure we don’t panic with any long balls and keep on probing.
“They’ve got a couple of very dangerous strikers so we need to make sure when we’re attacking we’re defensively minded in terms of our organisation.”