Sarah Clapson's Nottingham Forest player ratings - Aina excellent, Wood misses chances in defeat

Missed chances proved costly for Nottingham Forest as they fell to a 2-0 defeat at home to Manchester City.

Nuno Espirito Santo’s side went into their penultimate home game of the season sitting just one point above the relegation zone. In desperate need of points, they made a bright start against the title-challengers.

Neco Williams had a couple of good opportunities inside the opening 15 minutes, while Morgan Gibbs-White wasn’t too far away with a free-kick. At the other end, Matz Sels thwarted a Kevin De Bruyne effort in the ninth minute but City were limited to few chances.

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Forest’s set-piece woes came back to haunt them again, though. Josko Gvardiol opened the scoring for the visitors with a header from a corner in the 32nd minute.

Still, the chances continued to come for the hosts. Chris Wood missed one either side of the break and Murillo flicked a corner over just before half-time.

Sels made a big save to push away a De Bruyne shot past the hour. But the Reds were made to pay for not taking their chances when Erling Haaland made it 2-0 with 20 minutes to go. Here’s how Reds reporter Sarah Clapson rated the Forest players at the City Ground.

Matz Sels: Wasn’t tested as much as he might have expected to be, but did make some good saves. Set-pieces continue to be an Achilles’ heel, though. Rating: 7/10

Willy Boly: A big boost for the Reds to have the 33-year-old back from injury, and he made a difference. Wasn’t afraid to put his body on the line, something Forest will need more of in their remaining games. Rating: 8/10

Murillo: Might have been beaten for the visitors’ two goals, but that doesn’t tell the whole story. Hurt himself when making a brilliant challenge shortly before Haaland went past him for City’s second. Rating: 7.5/10

Moussa Niakhate: The switch to a three-man back line worked really well. City were generally kept at arm’s length and limited to few chances. Could be an option for the final three games. Rating: 7.5/10

Neco Williams: A big blow to lose the Welshman, not least because it meant the Reds were down to 10 men when the visitors opened the scoring. The right-back had been in a good run of form, too. Rating: 7.5/10

Danilo: Not necessarily the Brazilian’s most effective game in the Garibaldi but he still covered a lot of ground and contributed to a good team performance. Did seem to tire a bit in the second half. Rating: 7/10

Morgan Gibbs-White: Needed to be more switched on at the corner for the visitors’ opener. Had some really positive moments, though, as Forest caused their opponents problems. Rating: 7.5/10

Ola Aina: Left absolutely everything out there in a tireless performance. Just as in the reverse fixture, had the beating of Kyle Walker during one of several lung-busting runs. Outstanding. Rating: 8.5/10

Anthony Elanga: Loads of energy and gave the visitors plenty to think about with his pace. A positive that he was fit enough to start, even if he didn’t last the full 90. Rating: 7.5/10

Chris Wood: A case of what might have been. On another day, the front man could have had a hat-trick. Missed some big chances, though, and it proved costly. Rating: 6/10

Callum Hudson-Odoi: Tried his luck a few times and forced an excellent save with a good effort towards the end. Final bit of quality just wasn’t there for the Reds on this occasion. Rating: 7.5/10


Gonzalo Montiel (for Williams, 35mins): Put a terrific ball in for a Wood chance immediately after the Reds had fallen behind. The Argentine might be required again, depending on the severity of Williams’ injury. Rating: 6/10

Ryan Yates (for Danilo, 74mins): The trio of substitutions did disrupt Forest’s rhythm somewhat, but the game was already over at that point. Rating: 6/10

Andrew Omobamidele (for Murillo, 74mins): Slotted in well enough at the back. Forest will hope Murillo and Boly are OK for the remaining games, though. Rating: 6/10

Gio Reyna (for Elanga, 74mins): Didn’t really get an opportunity to show what he is about in the closing minutes. Rating: 6/10

Ibrahim Sangare (for Boly , 84mins): Difficult for the midfielder to get into any rhythm on something of a rare appearance. Game was over by that point. Rating: 6/10

Subs not used: Turner, Toffolo, Origi, Ribeiro.

How would you rate the Reds? Have your say in the comments below