Ineligible for selection when Steve Cooper’s side face his parent club on Friday night, Lowe has emerged as a key member of the visitors’ squad after moving to the City Ground last summer.
Forest are expected to launch an attempt to sign the 24-year-old on a permanent basis during the close season, with his contract at United not scheduled to expire until 2024.
But after telling The Star he has yet to receive any budget projections for the forthcoming transfer window, Paul Heckingbottom is set to wait until he receives more details about the money likely to be placed at his disposal before deciding Lowe’s future.
The outcome of Forest’s trip to United is crucial to both teams’ seasons, after they finished last weekend’s round of matches in ninth and seventh respectively.
Heckingbottom’s men suffered a first defeat in 10 outings when they were beaten at Millwall, where a selection crisis saw teenager Kyron Gordon make his first league start. Forest will make the short journey north unbeaten in five following a comfortable victory over Bristol City.
Lowe completed the full 90 minutes of that contest, which marked his 20th appearance in a Forest shirt. The last of his 11 for United came during an FA Cup tie at Bristol Rovers last term.
Appointed as manager on a permanent basis in November, Heckingbottom failed to name Lowe in any of his 11 games in caretaker charge towards the end of the previous campaign.
Acquired from Derby County as part of the deal which also saw Jayden Bogle move to United, Lowe is known to have grown frustrated by his lack of opportunities before Slavisa Jokanovic, Heckingbottom’s predecessor, sanctioned the switch to Forest seven months ago.
Cooper, who was also monitoring Rhian Brewster’s situation at United before the centre-forward rediscovered his form in front of goal, has remained tightlipped about his plans for Lowe.
But officials at United are convinced Forest will make an approach before the market re-opens.