Nottingham Forest will host Sheffield United in the second leg of their Championship play-off semi-final clash, and Steve Cooper will be hoping they can continue their momentum after their 2-1 victory at Bramall Lane.
The Forest manager took to his pre-match press conference to give a promising injury update on his team ahead of the important challenge facing them this evening.
Cooper told the press (via Nottinghamshire Live):
“There isn’t anything new from the game. We were carrying a few injuries going into it, with the players who were unavailable yesterday. There’s no changes from yesterday. There’s the normal bumps and bruises, and a little bit of fatigue from the game.”
The manager continued: “But that’s very normal for the day after a game. I’m fairly sure we’ll be as we were for the first leg.”
At this stage of the season after playing 46 games as well as a short turnaround in the play-offs when it comes to fixtures, Cooper will surely be delighted that his team are still fit and raring to go with just one game standing in the way of joining Huddersfield Town at Wembley for the final in just under two weeks time.
Despite having less possession (39%) Nottingham Forest took their chances and offered a superior attacking threat than their Premier League promotion competitors with over twice as many shots on target, five more big chances created and ultimately scoring two goals to secure a lead ahead of their home leg this evening.
If Cooper could lead his team to the final at the end of this month it would be an incredible achievement considering the position they were in when he inherited the side from Chris Houghton in September 2021.
Upon appointment, Forest were bottom of the Championship table, suffering their worst start to a campaign in over a century and Cooper has since completed a turnaround supporters would have felt was impossible when he joined the club seven months ago.
Thus, to get to the final and potentially return to the Premier League for the first time in 23 years would be a dream. With a lack of injuries, that could well become a reality.