Zach Clough has ‘bright future’ at Nottingham Forest – Reds boss explains decision to leave him out against Burton Albion


Zach Clough has a “bright future” at Nottingham Forest – and his absence from the squad last weekend was not a reflection on his progress at the City Ground, says Mark Warburton.

The Reds boss has told the former Bolton Wanderers man not to be too downhearted after missing out on a place in the squad that faced Burton Albion.

Warburton insists it was a hugely difficult call to leave Clough off the bench, when putting together his blueprint for the game against the Brewers.

And he wants Clough to know that he regards him as having the quality to make a big impact at the Championship club.

“It was tough on Saturday, but I do like to communicate our thinking to fans when I can and our thinking for the game was that David (Vaughan) might not get through the 90 minutes and Andreas (Bouchalakis) is a natural replacement to come in there, in that position,” Warburton said.

“We also know that he can get forward and get shots away, to try to draw them out. So we wanted him on the bench.

“Kieran Dowell has done exceptionally well of late and Kieran and Zach are very, very similar players. Tyler Walker has been outstanding in training, but he is very similar to Ben Brereton and Jamie Ward and we needed variety.

David Vaughan back in action for Forest trying to stop Lloyd Dyer

“Zach Clough and Kieran… to have them both on the bench when I was only ever going to use one of them? Kieran has done well lately. Zach has also been outstanding in training and it was a really, really tough decision.”

Warburton said he only made the decision on the morning of the game that Clough would not be involved.

“Up until the morning I was thinking what the right call was. You want to send the right message out to the players and the message to Zach is that he has been outstanding and he is a really, really talented young player,” he said.

“But Kieran has also done well, as have Barrie (McKay), Jason (Cummings)– you can only pick 11 players. I would love to play a 5-5-6 formation but we cannot do that. It was tough on Zach, because he did not deserve to be left out.

“He is such a clever footballer and he has a bright future. He is getting physically stronger and quicker as well. I have no doubt about his quality or the future he has here.”

Warburton has also issued a challenge to Vaughan and Liam Bridcutt to prove they can form a quality partnership in their deep midfield roles, in front of the back four.

Warburton said: “David has been out for a while and the question people ask is ‘can they play together?’. Are they too similar, can we get the balance right?

“That comes from playing together and working hard on the training ground. At times it was very good, at other times they were too similar and there was no forward passing option.

“We are delighted to welcome David back because he is a valuable squad member. Andreas also made a real contribution when he came on, as did Kieran.”

Read More

Latest Nottingham Forest news



…continue on post

LEAVE A REPLY