Latest Nottingham Forest news as Steve Cooper’s Reds prepare to face Manchester City in Premier League clash.
Head coach Steve Cooper joked he would love to have Nottingham Forest’s European Cup winners available for Saturday’s trip to face Manchester City.
The Reds have made a positive start to the Premier League season, having picked up their first win on the road since January when they beat Chelsea before the international break. But they know they are in for their toughest challenge of the campaign so far when they go to the Etihad Stadium this weekend.
Boss Pep Guardiola referenced the Reds’ two European Cups – one more than City hold in their collection – when looking ahead to the clash. Cooper knows the task ahead of his team at a stadium where they were thumped 6-0 last term, and quipped how he would love to be able to call upon some club legends.
“I heard about that,” he said of Guardiola’s comment. “I spoke to John McGovern earlier, but he’s not available for the weekend and he’s not registered in the 25-man squad! I wish they were available, but unfortunately they’re not!”
Cooper added: “The only thing in my mind is the toughest game in the world. That is the only thing I am concerned about. (Last season) is not something you should forget, as difficult as that night was, you should always look to learn and move forward.
“Manchester City, wherever you play them, particularly at the Etihad Stadium, is the toughest game you can play in domestic football. You can go there and play well and still be on the end of a difficult result. That is the reality of the level they can play at. We are fully aware of that but you have to go there with ambition and confidence and a mentality that you can be at your best and see how things unfold from there.
“We are under no illusions how tough it is going to be, we are in a good mindset. We are only thinking about ourselves and how we can have the influence and impact we want. If that’s enough on the day, then great.”
Earlier in the week, after City’s Champions League victory over Crvena Zvezda, Guardiola had said: “Next we have NFFC (Forest). Two Champions League winners. They have won one more than us.”