Aitor Karanka`s Nottingham Forest welcome Alex Neil`s Preston North End for Tuesday`s Championship Fixture.
Forest Manager, Aitor Karanka gave his pre-match views ahead of the visit of Preston:
‘Preston are going well and Alex Neil is doing a good job, I know him but it is about us – it is another tough game.
I said after the Hull game that football is great as it always gives you another chance and when you lose a game like on Saturday, to have another game quickly is the main thing. You always learn things from the game, when you win but especially when you lose – if we correct our mistakes, then we will improve but the main thing is the commitment and I couldn’t say anything bad about them as they did their best until the end.
This is football though; you don’t have time to regret or to be sad, you have to forget as soon as possible, learn and be ready for the next challenge – because, this game can be a good chance for revenge and to show the crowd.’
Nottigham Forest Team News:
Jack Hobbs and Chris Cohen remain absent with injury, with the latter unlikely to feature again this season and said to be on the verge of retiring due to persistent knee injuries.
Daryl Murphy is back in training, but is unlikely to be fit enough to feature against PNE, whilst Liam Bridcutt completes his 2 match suspension for collecting 10 bookings.
Tyler Walker is expected to head out on loan, with Bolton thought to be the destination.
David Vaughan is likely to start, possibly at the expense of Andreas Bouchalakis with Barry McKay, Zach Clough and Armand Traore also pushing for a place in the starting line up.
Player to watch: Joe Worrall
The 21 year old Hucknall born centre half made his 50th start for Forest in the defeat at Hull, but he now finds himself a wanted man with the club having rejected 2 offers from Burnley, believed to be around £10m.
A candidate for skipper already, Joe is a self confessed Forest fan and stated that he wants to stay at Forest – but the club have been known to cash in far too often in recent times, so no doubt they will have their resolve tested as the Transfer Window draws to a close – let’s hope it doesn’t distract Joe from his day job!
Preston North End Team News:
Alex Neil is likely to reverse the changes made for the FA Cup defeat with Jordan Hugill given the all-clear following a head injury.
Sean Maguire and Ben Davies miss out, whilst Ben Pearson has returned to training along with Tommy Spurr, but Callum Woods and Darnell Fisher are regarded as doubtful.
Player to watch: Jordan Hugill
The powerful 25 year old striker is top scorer for the Lilywhites this season with 10 goals in 29 appearances.
He had to be content with a place on the bench in the FA Cup 4th Round defeat at Bramall Lane on Saturday, following a head injury but is almost certain to return to the starting line up.
Match Facts & Stats
The Reds sit 14th in the Championship with 35 points from 28 games (w11, d2, l15), scoring 35 but conceding 43 and in typical Forest fashion, they followed up wins against Arsenal and Wolves with defeats to Villa and Hull.
Forest have just 1 league win in their last 7 games and whilst their home form had been good, a run of 3 consecutive defeats without scoring are causes for concern.
PNE may have gone 3 league games without a win, however a run of just 1 league defeat in 12 games and notably 6 away games without defeat, had seen them on the fringes of a playoff place.
Alex Neil`s side are now 11th in the Championship with 42 points from 28 games (w10, d12, l6) scoring 32 and conceding 28.
Geoff Eltringham has been appointed as Tuesday`s Referee, which will be his 22nd game in charge this season, the previous 21 have yielded 76 yellow and 1 red card. Last season officiated 40 games, brandishing 112 yellows and 5 red cards.
Mr Eltringham will be assisted by Nick Greenhalgh and James Mainwaring, with Andy Davies as the Fourth Official.
The reverse fixture ended 1-1 on 23rd December, with Paul Huntington cancelling out Ben Brereton`s opener.
The Bookies have Forest as favourites for a home win, but the Lilywhites are the Championship`s draw specialists and another 1-1 would seem a fair bet.
Forest take a trip to Craven Cottage to face Fulham on Saturday, 3rd February KO 3-00pm.