Former Nottingham Forest European Cup winner Frank Clark has spoken out about the current team and he has shown support for the side amid accusations that they have a negative style of play.
Slaven Bilic’s post-match comments after the West Brom match indicate that he believed Forest were lucky to come away from the Hawthorns with a point, but Clark has a different view.
The Reds’ style of play may be different to their promotion rivals but the ex-player suggests that doesn’t mean Forest should be discredited or overlooked as candidates to go up.
In defence of Sabri Lamouchi’s style of play, Clark told NottinghamshireLive:
“Apparently the pundits don’t seem to rate us because we tend to be a counter-attacking team, but that’s a way of playing.
“Not everyone has to play a high tempo game and play on the front foot. We’ve not got the players to play that way. We’ve got players who are good on the counter-attack, and that’s okay.
“There’s more than one way to skin a cat. We don’t all have to play the same way.
“Just because we don’t have the majority of possession in all the games doesn’t mean we can’t win them – and we’ve shown that.”
West Brom and Leeds may occupy the automatic promotion places due to their expansive style and a focus on keeping the ball, but it is worth mentioning that they have only conceded 36 and 30 goals respectively from 33 league games.
That is clearly a respectable return and shows defensive solidity is essential for promotion, and therefore Forest’s 33 goals conceded shows that Lamouchi has taken the right approach in adopting a counter-attacking style.
He has realised the strengths of his players and used a style which fits those at his disposal, and although Forest have averaged just 47% possession – and rank 19th in the Championship in that area – it has produced success.
Recent wins against high-flying Leeds and Brentford evidence that, and also suggest that the Reds would be able to overcome any opponent in the play-offs, should they miss out on the top two.
Despite a low rate of possession Lamouchi’s side have still averaged the seventh-most shots per game with 13.1 per game, showing they can still be effective, and that means Clark is right to defend the style in place.
So Forest fans do you like the team’s current style and has Lamouchi’s decision-making worked well so far? Let us know if you think his tactics can bring the Reds promotion…
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