Nottingham Forest midfielder Joao Carvalho certainly made a positive impact on his return to the City Ground, as he netted a brace against Bradford City on Wednesday evening.
Carvalho has found regular game time hard to come by with Nottingham Forest in recent seasons, having signed permanently for the Reds back in 2018.
The midfielder has made 67 appearances in total for the Championship side, and has chipped in with six goals and nine assists in his time with the club to date.
He spent last year’s campaign on loan with Spanish side Almeria, and made 36 appearances in total for them, as they finished fourth in the Segunda Division.
Carvalho marked his return to Nottingham Forest with a positive performance in their EFL Cup clash against Bradford City on Wednesday evening, as he netted both of the Reds’ goals in a 2-1 win over the League Two side at the City Ground, as they progressed to the next stage of the competition.
The 24-year-old has shown glimpses of his quality with the Reds so far, but for one reason or another, he’s been frozen out of the first-team in recent seasons.
The Portuguese-born midfielder has been a fan favourite at the City Ground, and you only have to look at the reaction on social media to his brace against Bradford City to see how highly the club’s supporters rate Carvalho.
Carvalho has shown that he can perform to a high standard in the Championship, having scored four goals and been on hand to provide eight assists in 40 appearances for the Reds during the 2018/19 season.
Nottingham Forest were crying out for a player that could provide the creative spark for Chris Hughton’s side last season, as they endured a frustrating league campaign last term, as they finished 17th in the second-tier standings.
Ryan Yates shoould be sweating over their place in the starting XI moving forwards, especially if Carvalho is to remain at the City Ground beyond the summer transfer window.
He’s shown his quality in tr recent win over Bradford, and he couldn’t have timed it more perfectly to stake a serious claim for a place in their starting XI moving forwards into their Championship matches.
Speaking in an interview on EFL on Quest (quotes sourced from Nottinghamshire Live) after his performance against Middlesbrough in a 3-0 win for Forest back in 2019, Stephen Warnock issued high-praise for Carvalho, and labelled him as ‘superb’, before claiming that he was the difference in their win over Boro.
“Carvalho is a superb player. His individual quality is excellent. He has ability on the ball and a fantastic weight of pass. He was the difference against a poor Middlesbrough team, a very defensive Middlesbrough team.”
Nottingham Forest boss Chris Hughton should drop Yates and hand Carvalho a starting spot in their next match against AFC Bournemouth this weekend, as he’s certainly shown that he’s up for the fight when it comes to a first-team place in Hughton’s plans moving forward this term.
AND in other news, Nottingham Forest confirm some exciting transfer news…