With Nottingham Forest next up for Boro in part two of the Easter double header, we take a closer look at six players who have pulled on the famous red shirt of both clubs...
Britt Assombalonga became our record signing when he joined the club from Forest in the summer of 2017. Forest themselves had splashed out a club record fee to land the Congolese striker three years earlier, surpassing the £4.5m paid to Celtic for striker Pierre van Hooijdonk in 1997. In fact, it was the third time a club had raised the bar for Britt - Peterborough United had broken the £1m barrier to bring in the forward in 2013. Beginning his career with Watford, Assombalonga proved his goalscoring credentials in a series of loan spells in the lower leagues before joining Posh in 2013. There he would win the Football League Trophy and a place in the PFA's League One Team of the Year with a total of 33 goals in a single season. Moving to Forest, he averaged just under a goal every two games, scoring 30 in total for The Reds despite a serious knee injury that significantly curtailed his playing time in the middle of his three years with the club.
Dani Ayala and Dimi Konstantopoulos are the other current Boro players to have played for the East Midlands club - both enjoyed short spells at The City Ground on loan.
Adlene Guedioura has somewhat revived his career after returning to Nottingham Forest from Boro last year. The Algerian midfielder made only a handful of appearances on Teesside having moved to the club from Watford exactly a year earlier, and just one under Tony Pulis - who had been his manager at Crystal Palace - in the Welshman's first victory as Boro boss away at Preston. Guedioura's contract was terminated on the final day of the January transfer window, allowing him to link up with The Reds where he has since gone on the become an integral part of their midfielder. It's a second spell at the City Ground for Guedioura, who spent two seasons there in the early days of his career in England.
Nottingham native Viv Anderson spent time with future employers Manchester United as a schoolboy but it was with local club Forest that he made his breakthrough as a professional. A gangly but uncompromising defender, Anderson became an integral part of Brian Clough's legendary Reds team that won the First Division and two European Cup titles, also becoming one of the first black players to represent England. Anderson was at the opposite end of his playing career when he arrived on Teesside in 1994, his focus shifting to coaching as assistant to Bryan Robson, who he had played with at United. That said, he did make two appearances as the club won promotion to the top flight in the 1994/95 season. Viv was Robbo's reliable number two right up until the pair departed the club in June 2001, to date his last role in football.
Mark Proctor enjoyed two stints with Boro, either side of spells with Forest as well as Sunderland. Rising through our youth ranks, Proctor was handed his first team debut at 17 by John Neal, netting nine times in his maiden campaign. Proctor continued to impress for Boro, with his form rewarded with caps for England Under-21s and was snapped up by fellow Teessider Brian Clough to link up with back-to-back European Cup winners Nottingham Forest. After 18 months with Forest, Proctor headed back up north on loan to Sunderland before moving permanently to Roker Park, where he clocked up a further century of games. Returning home to Boro, Proctor captained the club to our first Wembley appearance in 1990 in the Zenith Data Systems Cup final against Chelsea and enjoyed promotion to the inaugural Premier League under the guidance of Lennie Lawrence in 1992.
Much of Brian Laws' successful 600-strong game career was spent between Boro and Forest in the late 1980s and early 90s. Born in Northumberland, Laws played for the famous Wallsend Boys Club before joining Burnley as a pro. Arriving at Boro in 1985, defender Laws was part of the legendary Boro team that endured the perils of near-liquidation and bounced back in the form of back-to-back promotions. A £120,000 offer from Forest proved too good for Boro to turn down in 1988, and he went on to establish himself as a mainstay at the City Ground over the subsequent six years. He is often credited as Forest's second-best right-back of all time behind the aforementioned Viv Anderson.
A long stay with Nottingham Forest was sandwiched between two lengthy stints with Boro for former England international Colin Cooper. Beginning his career with us in 1984, the defender made just short of 200 appearances in his first Boro spell, featuring in the ZDS Cup final in the nation's capital. After a couple of years with Millwall, Cooper headed for the City Ground in 1993 where, in his first season, Forest were elevated to the Premier League - the first of two promotions he earned with Nottingham. It was during his time with Forest which saw him get the nod for the Three Lions, gaining two caps. He returned to Boro in 1998, and featured in the run to the Carling Cup final success in 2004 but didn't make the cut for the squad in Cardiff. He hanged up his boots in 2006 and became a part of the backroom team, which included a spell in the dugout as caretaker boss in 2011, a role he also had with Bradford City, and a short time at the helm of North East neighbours Hartlepool.