Aitor Karanka`s Nottingham Forest face Nigel Clough`s Burton Albion At The Pirelli Stadium in this weekend`s Championship fixture.
With the wheels falling off Karanka`s waggon, the Forest Manager, remained positive at Thursday`s pre match press conference:
‘I don’t care if it is Burton, Arsenal, Man City or Wolves because, we showed that we could compete against Wolves and again, 10 days ago against Fulham but it is about winning games. I prefer to play good football, but if we don’t play good football and still win the game, that would be a good scenario.
The most important thing is that we need to start with the winning mentality, we need to approach games thinking that we have to win those games. Football is football, it is impossible to win every single game, but when you have the right mentality it is easier.’
Burton Albion Team News:
Nigel Clough has revealed a few injury concerns for his side, although record signing Liam Boyce could well make his first start.
Tom Flanagan and William Miller miss out, whilst doubts surround John Brayford, Ben Turner, Luke Murhpy and Lloyd Dyer.
Player to watch: Lloyd Dyer
The 35 year old winger is top scorer for Nigel Clough`s Burton with 6 goals in 28 appearances, which for a side with so few goals scored certainly makes him favourite to give Forest`s wayward defence problems – even with a niggly injury!
Nottingham Forest Team News:
Jack Hobbs and Chris Cohen remain absent with injury, but Liam Bridcutt has recovered from a groin injury and would be a welcome sight for many of a Forest persuasion.
Ben Watson could well make his Forest debut, given that Aitor Karanka has hinted that he will make changes – quite frankly, there are a few players that should drop themselves based upon recent ‘performances`.
Player to watch: The Away Support
It`s too hard to pick a key man for the Reds at present, so here`s a shout out to the long suffering Forest faithful, who have had to endure torrid times in recent years – the away win at Wolves is certainly a highlight, yet they travel far & wide hoping that those they support show some of the passion we have!
Match Facts & Stats
Bottom of the table Burton have 25 points from 31 games (w6, d7, l18) with 24 goals for and 58 against. The Brewers have not won at home since September and have just 1 point from their last 5 games, after a mini resurgence around Christmas – so this truly is a battle of the worst defences in the league, although they will fancy beating a Forest team that are in worse form.
Forest have continued their downward spiral, to occupy 17th in the table Championship with 35 points from 31 games (w11, d2, l18), scoring 35 but conceding 50.
The new manager bounce has to happen at some point, as Forest are dire – and that is about as positive as I can manage.
Forest have lost their last 4 games, their last 5 home games – ALL without scoring and have just 1 win in 10 League games. With 15 games to go – this has a relegation 6 pointer written all over it!
Andy Davies has been appointed as Saturday`s Referee, which will be his 19th game in charge this season, the previous 18 have seen him produce 70 yellow and 2 red cards. Last season he officiated 38 games, brandishing 136 yellows and 4 red cards.
Mr Davies will be assisted by Paul Hodskinson and Mark Dwyer, with Geoff Eltringham as the Fourth Official.
David Prutton believes a woefully formless Forest will scrape a draw this weekend – which, would actually be a major improvement on recent performances.
Amazingly, the Bookies have Forest as favourites, but having attended Forest`s recent games – a home win seems most likely!
Forest welcome Jaap Stam`s Reading Trentside on Tuesday, 20th February KO 7-45 pm.