Meet the opposition | Nottingham Forest

28th November 2020
First team
Joe Lolley

With Swansea City making the trip to the City Ground to take on Nottingham Forest on Sunday, we take a closer look at the Reds.

What’s their story?

Nottingham Forest are currently contesting their 13th successive season in the Championship.

The club has a rich history, winning the First Division title in 1977-78 under manager Brian Clough, who also led Forest to memorable European Cup triumphs in successive seasons.

The club has not featured in the Premier League since relegation in 1999 and have spent all bar three of the intervening series in the second tier.

The closest they have come to a top-flight return was in 2011, falling just short as the Swans beat them in the Championship play-offs. Their best finish since was seventh last season, as they missed out to the Swans in a dramatic play-off race.

They have a stacked trophy cabinet, with four League Cups and two FA Cups to their name in addition to those famous league and European triumphs.

How’s their form?

Scott McKenna

Improving. Since Chris Hughton replaced Sabri Lamouchi in the wake of a miserable start to the season, Forest have made some progress.

The Reds won three and drew three of Hughton’s first seven games, but have since lost their last two at Barnsley and Bournemouth.

They had gone 11 games without a win prior to Lamouchi’s exit.

Who’s the boss?

Chris Hughton

Chris Hughton. The former Tottenham, West Ham and Republic of Ireland full-back returned to management for the first time since leaving Brighton when he was appointed at the City Ground.

A highly-respected coach, Hughton spent 14 years on the coaching staff at Tottenham, before taking up a similar role at Newcastle.

He got his first full appointment on Tyneside and led them back to the Premier League in 2010, and was very unfortunate to lose his job in December of that year.

Spells with Birmingham, Norwich and Brighton followed, with Hughton earning promotion to the top-flight for the second time in his managerial career with the Seagulls.

Who’s the captain?

Lewis Grabban

Lewis Grabban. Lamouchi initially named four captains for the season, with Grabban, Michael Dawson, Samba Sow and Joe Worrall the quartet selected.

Hughton has not ripped up that template, but it had been Grabban who had been wearing the armband on the pitch until a hip injury struck.

Jack Colback has taken up the mantle his absence.

Experienced striker Grabban, 32, has long been a reliable goalscorer and he is well-travelled having had spells with Crystal Palace, Oldham, Motherwell, Brentford, Rotherham, Bournemouth, Norwich, Reading, Sunderland and Aston Villa before joining Forest.

He has 36 goals in 91 league appearances for the Reds.

Who are the key men?

Lyle Taylor

Lyle Taylor was a high-profile off-season acquisition as the striker arrived from Charlton, and he already has four goals to his name.

While Matty Cash departed, they have retained the services of the excellent Joe Lolley and Joe Worrall, although the latter is sidelined by injury at the moment.

Scott McKenna has performed strongly in his absence, while Forest also brought in the creativity of Anthony Knockaert from Fulham on loan.