Sheffield United host Nottingham Forest at Bramall Lane tomorrow in another big and important game in the Sky Bet Championship.
Both United and Forest are ticking along nicely under new management this term. Indeed, both are in with a shout of the top six, meaning tomorrow’s game is a huge one.
But what can Blades fans expect from the Reds under Steve Cooper? Well, Sheffield United News caught up with Nottingham Forest News’ Lee Clarke to get the lowdown on the latest visitors to S2.
First off then, how are Forest shaping up heading into Friday? We’ve all seen those cup performances but is it the same in the league?
We’re ticking along nicely. Steve Cooper recently said that his idea of a perfect Forest performance was the first half against Leicester (we were 3-0 up) but that level of fluency going forward hasn’t quite happened in the league just yet. But to answer the question, we’re in a pretty good place.
Steve Cooper was touted for the Blades when Wilder left. Just how has his impact been at the City Ground?
What a bloke! He’s been in charge for coming up to six months and the feel-good factor is back at the football club. The biggest compliment I can pay Cooper is that every game is now eagerly-anticipated and we play a style that sees us have a go in every single game.
Much has been made of Djed Spence and Brennan Johnson. Just how good are they? Premier League bound?
Incredible. The pair of them. For both players, we’ve exhausted every superlative going this season. Johnson and Spence will both play for top six PL clubs at some point in their careers.
Who else could cause a threat? And is there any weakness the Blades could really look to exploit?
James Garner has been brilliant in the last couple of months. He’s showcased the sort of form from central midfield that could earn him a genuine chance at Manchester United. Keinan Davis is also a battering ram and he won’t give any defence a moment of peace. If Jack Robinson is still anywhere near as suspect defensively as he was for us, then I hope Johnson can send him into early retirement.
What have you made of Sheffield United Heckingbottom? We imagine a different beast to the Jokanovic team you saw earlier this season!
Very similar to Cooper. The atmosphere seemed toxic under Jokanovic. I actually thought the style of play was bizarre when you came to our place. Lots of passing without ever really going anywhere. Heckingbottom seems to have instilled a modern approach and having seen your bench last weekend, you still have some real quality.
Finally, what’s your prediction for the game and is your playoff push over if you do lose?
We typically don’t do well at Bramall Lane and Max Lowe is naturally a huge miss for us. I think it could be a draw so I will go for 1-1. Personally I don’t think it would be game over in terms of the play-offs. There’s a lot of football left and we’ve won three on the trot three times already under Cooper. It’d be difficult it we lost but not unassailable.