Preview | Nottingham Forest v Swansea City
Swansea City will look to bounce back from late heartache against Leeds when they face another vital fixture in their play-off chase at Nottingham Forest this evening (6pm).
Steve Cooper’s side saw a point snatched from their grasp late on against the leaders on Sunday, just as they looked primed to climb into the top six with just three games remaining.
Defeat, while disappointing, did not alter the position Swansea had been in ahead of the weekend’s fixtures and they headed into this latest round of games still a point and a place off the play-off spots.
Results on Tuesday night have altered the picture slightly, as Cooper predicted they would, and the visitors will kick off in the East Midlands sitting eighth in the table, four points off their target.
They face a Forest side who currently occupy one of those top six spots, but are not guaranteed involvement in the final promotion shake-up once the regular season is done.
It means this is another contest with so much at stake for those involved it is no understatement to say victory for either sides will have considerable repercussions at the top of the table.
Swansea City will wait on the fitness of Freddie Woodman for the contest in the East Midlands, after the keeper was forced off late on in the defeat to Leeds.
Should the on-loan Newcastle keeper fail to recover, Erwin Mulder could make his first start of the season after appearing from the bench on Sunday.
Jordon Garrick is back from suspension, while Joe Rodon and Ben Wilmot are sidelined.
Steve Cooper: “It’s such an important time, but in the end we have to look after ourselves and not wait for others to give us a chance.
“There is a lot we can take into the game on the back of a good performance against Leeds.
“We have to go into every game committed to the plans we have to win and, if we get it right, we will give ourselves every chance.
“We have to believe in what we do and give 100 per cent, and we will do that.”
Sabri Lamouchi: “A lot of things have happened this year - a manager staying the full year, the best year for the club for 10 years and the season is not finished, and Lewis Grabban scoring 20 goals.
“We will make a point of all that at the end.
“But I know how the players are improving. I know what we have done until now.
“But we need to do the job for the next two or three weeks. It is so important, not just for the club and the players, but because of what we have shown this year.
Remember the last time?
Nottingham Forest struck late on to come from behind and condemn the Swans to a fourth consecutive defeat.
The Swans had looked on course for victory when George Byers’ volley deflected in off Connor Roberts with 14 minutes left.
But two goals from two corners sunk the Swans at the City Ground in a game which was in their hands for large parts.
Sub Daryl Murphy put Forest back on level terms four minutes later as the hosts reacted quickly to falling behind.
Then, with two minutes left, Molla Wague headed in another corner to keep Forest’s play-off bid on track.
1 – The Swans have won just one of their last seven league meetings against Nottingham Forest (excluding play-off fixtures).
14 – Swansea’s last win at the City Ground came 14 years ago, in 2006, with Lee Trundle on the scoresheet.