The captain and first-choice centre-back has missed each of the Hammers' last three games with a knee problem and while he was involved in light training again this week, it remained to be seen whether he would be fit to start against Forest.
“We’ll have another look this morning, we’ve not really had a chance to get him assessed,” manager David Moyes said on Friday, after the key Europa League win over Olympiacos. “Hopefully he’s making some progress and getting close to playing."
However, Zouma does start on Sunday, with Konstantinos Mavropanos dropping out of defence and Alphonse Areola back in goal at the expense of Lukasz Fabianski.
Tomas Soucek also returns to midfield as Said Benrahma drops to the bench against Forest.
Meanwhile, Moyes has suggested that West Ham will not be forced into panic buys in January despite potentially losing as many as four players to the Africa Cup of Nations.
Nayef Aguerd, Mohammed Kudus, Maxwel Cornet and Said Benrahma could all be missing if called up by their respective nations for the tournament, which takes place in Ivory Coast in January and February next year.
"We’ve talked about it a couple of times because we’ve got three or four players possibly away," Moyes said. "But I don’t think it will necessarily make us go out and buy more players, I don’t see us doing that.
"We’ll need to work out exactly how long the player will be away and which games they might miss. But it’s always a difficult time when you’re losing players to the AFCON."
West Ham XI: Areola, Coufal, Zouma, Aguerd, Emerson Palmieri, Soucek, Alvarez, Ward-Prowse, Kudus, Bowen, Lucas Paqueta
Subs: Fabianski, Cresswell, Fornals, Antonio, Mavropanos, Ings, Ogbonna, Benrahma, Kehrer
Time and date: 2pm GMT on Sunday November 12, 2023
Venue: London Stadium