‘Confident’ Jordan Smith is Nottingham Forest’s man of the match in victory over Sheffield United


Jordan Smith: Might think he could have done better with the game’s opening goal, but was confident when dealing with crosses and made some solid saves in key moments – including one in injury time to deny Duffy. Rating: 8/10

Michael Mancienne: A much-needed composed presence in a defence that looked vulnerable in the first half. Mark Warburton has made him his captain and this was a performance that demonstrated why. Rating: 7/10

Joe Worrall: The first half was not his best 45 minutes of football in a red shirt as he too often looked tentative and hesitant. But, like Forest, he was much better in the second half, when he made some vital interceptions and looked a completely different player. Rating: 6/10

Joe Worrall beats Sheffield United’s Leon Clarke to the ball

Danny Fox: Actually had a decent first half, producing a few important challenges to deny United goalscoring opportunities. Did well as a left-sided central defender and later as left-back. Rating: 7/10

Tendayi Darikwa skips over a sliding challenge

Tendayi Darikwa: Had a torrid first 20 minutes, when United were too often allowed to deliver crosses from their left. Did improve as game went on and benefitted after they changed formation. Delivered the cross that led to the Dowell goal. Would have got a four out of 10 for his first half display but responded well. Rating: 6/10

Kieran Dowell: Took his goal very well and was a lively figure whenever he got on the ball. Will have been disappointed not to add a second goal, after firing a decent opening over. Rating: 7/10

Kieran Dowell in the thick of the action

Liam Bridcutt: Another solid performance from the midfielder, who repeatedly drew a halt to Sheffield United attacks by being in the right place at the right time. Rating: 7/10

Ben Osborn: Another typical performance from the midfielder, who had work rate, energy and always wanted the ball. Was a key figure in the final stages in particular. Rating: 7/10

Armand Traore: Started the game as a left wing-back, had a spell as a left winger and finished as a left-back. Did a decent enough job in every position. Rating: 7/10

Jason Cummings: Took his goal superbly and will have been disappointed not to have added a second, when he fired wide with his weaker right foot late in the first half. Rating: 7/10

Jason Cummings celebrates scoring

Daryl Murphy: A constant menace whenever he got on the ball. Has real physical strength but a bit of quality too. Rating: 7/10

Subs

Andreas Bouchalakis (for Fox, 45): Came into the centre of the pitch as Forest reshuffled at half-time. Generally used the ball well. Rating: 6/10

Ben Brereton (for Cummings, 76): Set the tone as Forest held on with a battling challenge in his own half. Rating: 6/10

Zach Clough (for Dowell, 79): Had a promising break brought to an unsubtle halt as Forest looked for a third late on. Rating: 6/10

Unused subs: Henderson, Lichaj, McKay, Walker.



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