There is no doubt that Nottingham Forest supporters will still be reeling following the embarrassing defeat at The City Ground last weekend, with Steve Cooper’s side going from 2-0 up at half-time to 3-2 down against Bournemouth.
Now the Welsh manager will be working hard to determine the next steps moving forward to lift the spirits at the club and looking for ways to improve the inconsistencies in the team to make sure they deliver when they play Leeds United next Monday night.
Forest have now fallen into the relegation zone after their defeat at the weekend, and strengthening their defence could be one of the solutions to improving upon their current form in the Premier League, with the side conceding 11 goals in their last three league games.
One player who could be given the opportunity to earn his spot in Cooper’s starting XI is former Wolverhampton Wanderers centre-back Willy Boly who signed late in the transfer window for the bargain price of £2.25m.
The 31-year-old fell out of favour at Molineux after Bruno Lage decided to shake his defensive set-up, changing to four at the back leaving 6 foot 5 Boly without a place in the starting set-up, but now he can reprise his powerful presence in the Forest backline instead.
Despite suffering with injury issues last season, over ten league appearances Boly was solid in his position making 1.4 interceptions, 2.5 tackles and 3.5 clearances per game, as well as tallying up a 91% pass completion rate in his own half and winning 56% of his duels combined proving that he is a reliable force.
To compare those numbers to those at Forest this term, the Ivorian would rank second in the squad for tackles, fourth in the side for interceptions and joint-second for clearances. Thus, he would evidently add an extra layer of solidity to Cooper’s defence.
The centre-back who was hailed as “monster” and as “scary” by Conor Coady, can use his experience in a back three in the Premier League to offer Forest a game-changing perspective in their defence, which could spark an improvement in the team going forward in their fixtures ahead.
Luckily, Cooper has plenty of time to pull the club out of their 19th position in the league table and establishing the best players out of his 21 new signings that can deliver when needed will be the key to retaining their top-flight status when the campaign finishes.