Nottingham Forest vs Brentford Predictions

Nottingham Forest vs Brentford predictions for Sunday’s Premier League clash. Both Forest and Brentford have had a mixed campaign so far this season and this is a crucial match to gain points and confidence. Who will prevail at the City Ground? Read on for all our free predictions and betting tips.

Nottingham Forest
Match Live Sunday, 1st October at 2:00 pm In:
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Nottingham Forest vs Brentford Predictions

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A Battle of Equals at the City Ground

Key Stats
– Nottingham Forest has a 63% possession rate in their last game against Manchester City.
– Brentford registered a whopping 18 shots against Arsenal in their recent EFL Cup match.
– Taiwo Awoniyi has 11 goal involvements in his last 11 Premier League appearances for Nottingham Forest.

This Sunday sees Nottingham Forest, often referred to as the “Tricky Trees”, taking on Brentford at their home ground, the City Ground. The two teams are closely matched, with only a single point between them in the Premier League standings. This makes for a tantalising encounter and the only one in the Premier League this Super Sunday. 

Recent Performances

Nottingham Forest have shown resilience in their recent matches. Their last game against Manchester City, despite having a numerical advantage due to Rodri’s red card, was a testament to their improving form. The team enjoyed a whopping 63% possession and took nine shots in the second half alone, though they ended up on the losing side.

Comparing this season to their last, Forest have truly turned a corner. Their start to the 2023-24 campaign has been promising with two wins and a draw already in their bag. Among the highlights include a victory against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge and a brilliant equaliser from debutant Callum Hudson-Odoi against Burnley. They have displayed their mettle at the City Ground, securing impressive results against top-tier teams like Man City, Arsenal, Liverpool, and Chelsea.

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On the other hand, Brentford’s journey has been bittersweet. Despite a commendable effort against Arsenal in the EFL Cup, registering 18 shots, they bowed out in the third round. Their season began on a high note with a draw against Tottenham Hotspur and a decisive win against Fulham. However, their form has since dipped, embarking on a four-game winless streak in the Premier League.

Team Analysis

Nottingham Forest’s squad, which was once marred by injuries, looks revitalised. Danilo and Nuno Tavares are their only injury concerns. The summer transfer window has been kind to them, with marquee players like Ibrahim Sangare, Anthony Elanga, Nicolas Dominguez, Divock Origi, and Hudson-Odoi joining the ranks. Nigerian forward Taiwo Awoniyi, with 11 goal involvements in his last 11 Premier League appearances, is expected to lead the charge, with the talented Morgan Gibbs-White supporting him.

Brentford, meanwhile, faces a few challenges. Rico Henry, a crucial member, is likely out for the season with an ACL injury. Furthermore, with Ivan Toney sidelined until January, Keane Lewis-Potter is expected to step up alongside Bryan Mbeumo and Yoane Wissa.

The Tacticians’ Web: Offensive and Defensive Strategies

When Nottingham Forest squared off against the 10-man Manchester City side, Steve Cooper’s team implemented a strategy which saw them dominate possession with an impressive 63% in the second half, despite an early setback. This strategy of patient ball retention, even against the league’s elite, suggests a level of confidence in Forest’s ability to control and dictate the flow of a match. This approach was also evident when they managed a comeback against Burnley with the sheer brilliance of Callum Hudson-Odoi. Their ability to navigate through tight defences, courtesy of players like Hudson-Odoi and Morgan Gibbs-White, paints a picture of a team that relies on individual brilliance and quick transitions.

On the contrary, Brentford have showcased their strengths early in the season, with a convincing 3-0 victory against Fulham. Yet, of late, they’ve hit a snag, perhaps evidenced by their reliance on Ivan Toney, their suspended talisman. In his absence, though Bryan Mbeumo and Yoane Wissa have tried stepping up, the side seems to lack that final touch. A key point in Brentford’s attacking play, when it comes to strategy, is their ability to take numerous shots, as evidenced against Arsenal in the EFL Cup, yet they need better shot conversion.

Defensively, both teams have shown they can be resilient. Nottingham Forest’s Worrall and Niakhate have formed a formidable partnership at the back, while Brentford’s duo of Pinnock and Collins have also been noteworthy.

Key Players Stepping Up

For Nottingham Forest, the likes of Callum Hudson-Odoi and Morgan Gibbs-White have been instrumental. Hudson-Odoi, with an average rating of 7.45, has been particularly important in unlocking opposition defences. Meanwhile, the Nigerian forward, Taiwo Awoniyi, has been their most lethal weapon, with three goals and two assists.

For Brentford, Yoane Wissa and Bryan Mbeumo are the ones keeping their attack ticking. But with the team having tasted victory only twice in the Premier League so far, the performance of these players, although commendable, needs more support from the rest of the squad.

Management’s Impact on Play Style

Steve Cooper’s mark on Nottingham Forest is evident. With a slew of signings including Divock Origi and Hudson-Odoi, he’s evidently going for a blend of youth and experience. His trust in playing a possession-based game, even against formidable opponents, is a testament to his style.

Thomas Frank’s Brentford has been a team that plays with heart and aggression. The Bees’ start to the season was impressive, but their recent form is a cause for concern. Frank might need to rethink his strategies, especially in the absence of Toney.

Expected Goals Analysis

While Nottingham Forest may boast a less aggressive forward line, their ability to create quality chances has been evident. Gibbs-White and Elanga have been involved in potential goal-scoring situations, with Gibbs-White topping the Expected Assists charts.

Brentford, on the other hand, seem to have a more direct approach. Their high shot count suggests that they are creating opportunities but might be lacking the clinical touch.

Comparative Tactical Analysis

Tactically, Nottingham Forest is a side that thrives on ball retention and individual brilliance. Players like Hudson-Odoi and Gibbs-White have the ability to change the outcome with a moment of magic. Brentford, meanwhile, relies heavily on pressing and creating numerous chances, hoping to capitalise on sheer volume.

Suggestions for Improvement

For Nottingham Forest: While the individual brilliance is commendable, they might benefit from having more structured set-piece routines and improving their shot conversion rate. A stronger midfield presence can further solidify their ball-retention strategy.

For Brentford: The Bees need to improve their shot conversion rate. With the likes of Mbeumo and Wissa upfront, they need to be more clinical. Additionally, defensive lapses have cost them, so a more disciplined backline could prevent avoidable goals.

Pros, Cons, and Potential Dynamics

Nottingham Forest:

Pros: Strong individual players, ability to control the game through possession, resilience in defence.

Cons: Over-reliance on a few players, potential vulnerability to high pressing.

Brentford:

Pros: Aggressive attacking approach, high shot count, effective pressing.

Cons: Over-reliance on Toney, defensive vulnerabilities, lack of clinical finishing.

Given the data and the form of both teams, Sunday’s game will likely see Nottingham Forest controlling possession, trying to exploit spaces with Hudson-Odoi’s pace and Gibbs-White’s creativity. Brentford, meanwhile, will look to press high, disrupt Forest’s rhythm, and capitalise on their more direct approach.

Predictions

1. Match Result Prediction: Nottingham Forest to Win

Given the recent form and home advantage, Nottingham Forest seem to be the favourites to seal the three points. The Tricky Trees have shown resilience and capability, especially in matches against top-tier teams. Their recent display against Manchester City, where they enjoyed a significant possession advantage following a red card to City’s Rodri and limited the champions to just one attempt after the break, exemplifies their potential. Moreover, they’ve only lost two of their last 17 Premier League home games, a strong testament to their dominance at the City Ground.

2. Correct Score Prediction: 2-1 in favour of Nottingham Forest

Analysing the attacking prowess of both teams and the vulnerabilities in their defences, a 2-1 victory for Nottingham Forest seems plausible. Forest have displayed commendable attacking abilities recently, while Brentford have shown some lapses, especially in their backline, evident in their recent fixtures.

3. Goalscorer Prediction: Taiwo Awoniyi

Taiwo Awoniyi is in scintillating form for Nottingham Forest. With 11 goal involvements in his last 11 Premier League appearances, which includes nine goals and two assists, he’s the primary threat Brentford’s defence will have to neutralise. Given his current form, Awoniyi is likely to find the net in the upcoming fixture.

4. Corner Prediction: Nottingham Forest to have more corners

One of the key metrics that indicates a team’s attacking intent and territorial dominance is the number of corner kicks they win. Nottingham Forest, with their assertive style of play, especially at the City Ground, are likely to win more corners in the match. Predicting the total number of corners for both teams, considering their attacking statistics, a combined corner count of around 8-10 seems realistic.

5. Shot on Target Prediction: Morgan Gibbs-White

While Awoniyi has been prolific in front of the goal, it’s the services of Morgan Gibbs-White that have been instrumental behind the scenes. His playmaking abilities, positioning, and penchant for testing the goalkeeper make him a player likely to register a shot on target.

6. Yellow Card Prediction: Ola Aina

In the realm of football, passion sometimes leads to aggressive plays and misjudged tackles. Ola Aina, having already accumulated three yellow cards this season, appears to be a player who’s often in the thick of the action. Given the importance and potential intensity of this match, Aina might be one of the players who could end up in the referee’s book.

7. Assist Prediction: Anthony Elanga

Anthony Elanga, with his dynamic play and sharp vision, has been a creative force for Nottingham Forest. He’s already registered an assist this season, with an Expected Assists (xA) value of 0.92, indicating that he’s often in positions to craft goal-scoring opportunities for his teammates. In a match of this magnitude, Elanga’s flair and creativity might be pivotal in unlocking the Brentford defence.

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Tyler Morris
Sports writer and analyst Tyler Morris has more than eight years of experience writing about a range of sports. He has considerable knowledge of football, and he has also covered US sports extensively, offering in-depth comments and analysis on the most recent events in these sports. Tyler is a respected specialist in the field since he utilises his knowledge to provide incisive analysis and opinion on the most recent sports events with a track record of successful tips.