Nottingham Forest have answered their critics, says boss Mark Warburton


Mark Warburton believes Nottingham Forest have answered their critics when it comes to their defending from set pieces – but has urged his players not to let their guards drop.

The Reds boss was delighted with the determined manner his players battled to keep a clean sheet against Burton Albion.

It was just the third shutout Forest have achieved this season, during a start to the campaign that has seen them suffer some costly defensive fragility.

But Warburton was encouraged by the character shown in their 2-0 success over the Brewers – and wants to see Forest maintain that stoic nature when they head to Hull City and Reading over the next week or so.

“I said to the players before the game, with all that criticism we had about defending set pieces, we have responded. We are organised, we are disciplined, we have found a solution,” he said.

Jordan Smith claims a cross comfortably for the Reds

“They are defending their goal with a real passion. If a ball came in, we cleared our lines, we were solid, we defended well.

“I keep hearing people say that we are vulnerable from set pieces. But we have not conceded one now, in how many games?

“Mud sticks, I guess. But I am delighted with the clean sheet, they are important because they give you something to build on.

“We have to train well this week and then look forward to two tough road trips at Hull and Reading. But we will go there looking forward to the challenge.”

Forest named an unchanged back-four against Burton, with Eric Lichaj and Armand Traore as the full-backs and Michael Mancienne partnered by Danny Fox in the centre of defence.

Armand Traore slides in for a challenge before going off injured

A slight hamstring problem forced Traore off in the first half – and it remains to be seen whether he will be fit to face Hull.

But Warburton says he would like the opportunity to have some consistency in his team selection.

“We have had a series of niggling problems, of small injuries, illness and suspensions that has meant we have had to change the back-four,” he said.

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“Sometimes I want to keep my cards close to my chest in press conferences. I don’t like to tell the world about all our little injury problems, because you don’t want to give too much away to the opposition.

“Matt Mills has had a minor injury and some sickness problems over the past few weeks, but we don’t like to shout about things. When we have made changes, they have more often than not been enforced.

“I’ll often say ‘we are all fine’ because I don’t want to give away too much information. But at the same time, there are often reasons why you have to make changes.”



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