Sheffield United vs Nottingham Forest: Preview and Prediction

The Premier League’s relegation battle may have another twist when Nottingham Forest face the already-relegated Sheffield United.

The mood at Bramall Lane may have been dampened after Sheffield United’s relegation was confirmed after their 5-1 loss against Newcastle United. The Blades have had a truly wretched season on all fronts, and manager Chris Wilder will certainly show their dismal injury list as a major factor for their fall from grace.  But Sheffield United could still have a big say in the relegation battle as they host Nottingham Forest on Saturday.

Moreover, there is a small hope that the Blades will probably finish higher than their current place at the bottom of the pile. However, should they lose to Forest, that hope will vanish as soon as it arrives

For Wilder, finishing the season strongly will seem imperative to build momentum and brighten the mood. However, they have to avoid further humiliation and not set an unwanted record for goals conceded in a single season, as the Blades have currently shipped 97, with Swindon Town’s record of 101 in 42 games in 1993/94 still the biggest.

Nottingham Forest manager Nuno Espirito Santo will want his side to fight with everything on the line in the remaining games of their season to avoid any chance of suffering relegation. The Tricky Trees will rely on the positives from their latest defeat at the hands of Manchester City and will go into the Sheffield United game with some momentum on their side.

Nottingham Forest were wasteful in front of goal, and Nuno Espirito Santo will want to gift Chris Wood a new pair of boots for the gilt-edged chances he missed against Manchester City. With three games remaining in the season and Forest only a point ahead of 18th-placed Luton Town, they need a big result to put some daylight between them and the relegation zone.

On paper, Nottingham Forest will come into the Sheffield United clash as the favourites to take the win. But Forest have shown strange form throughout the season. Hence, Nuno Espirito Santo will not rely on the predictions on paper and will want his players to deliver on the promise of boosting their hopes for survival.

Team News & Tactics

Sheffield United

Sheffield United have had a terrible season with injuries, with their list already in double figures. Only James McAtee has somewhat recovered from his problem and may even feature in the game in some capacity.

Rhian Brewster, Oliver McBurnie, Rhys Norrington-Davies, Max Lowe, Chris Basham, John Egan, Daniel Jebbison, George Baldock, and Tom Davies are all out of contention. At the same time, the list continues to remain long.

Oliver Arblaster will sit at the base of the midfield unit, with Gustavo Hamer and Vinicius Souza on either side. Jayden Bogle and Ben Osborn are the prime contenders for the wing-back roles, while Chris Wilder will continue with Auston Trusty.

Anel Ahmedhodzic and Jack Robinson are the other preferred members of the back three. Ben Brereton Diaz and Cameron Archer are the best placed to lead the line for the Blades, and Wilder will hope for a strong end to the season and goals in this home game.

Probable Lineup (3-5-2): Foderingham; Robinson, Ahmedhodzic, Trusty; Bogle, Hamer, Arblaster, Souza, Osborn; Brereton Diaz, Archer

Nottingham Forest

Nuno Espirito Santo will have terribly missed Taiwo Awoniyi in the clash with Manchester City as he watched Chris Wood miss chance after chance and ruin a few fantastic moves by the team in that game.

The striker will continue to remain on the sidelines, as there is still some hope that he will make his return before the season ends. Neco Williams might miss the remainder of the season with a hamstring problem. There are some doubts about Willy Boly, Nicolas Dominguez, and Murillo after the Manchester City game.

Whether Nuno Espirito Santo will risk the trio for the Sheffield United game remains the question. Should he make changes, then Andrew Omobamidele will replace Murillo, while Moussa Niakhate might come in for Boly. Gonzalo Montiel and Ola Aina will continue in the full-back roles, while Danilo and Ryan Yates will play in the midfield double pivot.

Wood will have a chance at redemption as he will continue to lead the line for Nottingham Forest against Sheffield United, with Morgan Gibbs-White set to play in the attacking midfield role. Anthony Elanga and Callum Hudson-Odoi are the choices on the wings.

Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Sels; Montiel, Niakhate, Omobamidele, Aina; Yates, Danilo; Elanga, Gibbs-White, Hudson-Odoi; Wood

Key Stats

  • Sheffield United have conceded at least four goals in their last three matches in the Premier League.
  • Sheffield United have lost their last four matches in the Premier League.
  • Sheffield United have conceded 97 goals this season.
  • Nottingham Forest have managed only one win in their last 19 games against newly promoted sides in the Premier League.
  • Nottingham Forest are waiting for their first win on the road in 2024.

Player to Watch

Chris Wood

Embed from Getty Images

More than anyone, Arsenal fans were livid with the chances Wood missed against Manchester City, as in hindsight, his goals might have at least given Nottingham Forest a point against the Champions. The New Zealand international will have another chance at redemption when he leads the line against Sheffield United.

There is a big responsibility on the striker’s shoulders, especially with Nuno Espirito Santo having no other reliable options around. Hence, the spotlight will be on Wood ahead of this game against Sheffield United, as he will have to show he has the tools to help Forest bridge a gap away from the relegation battle.


Sheffield United 1-2 Nottingham Forest

Sheffield United have indeed shown some form in their recent games against Manchester United and before that. It showed that despite being the inferior side, they still can hurt defences, and that might be the case on Saturday.

Nottingham Forest have a better-attacking set-up to hurt the Blades, and Nuno Espirito Santo will hope for some clinical performances in the final third. Hence, there is a big chance for Forest to win here, we predict them to win this clash away from home.

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