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Club News

Match pack: Middlesbrough (H)

6 March 2015

Get all the news and views ahead of Nottingham Forest's Sky Bet Championship clash with Middlesbrough at The City Ground tomorrow (kick-off 3pm).

        Nottingham Forest v Middlesbrough       
   Sky Bet Championship
Saturday 7 March 2015 (kick-off 3pm)
The City Ground

Pre-match brief

Nottingham Forest have the league leaders in their sights tomorrow when Aitor Karanka brings his Middlesbrough side to The City Ground tomorrow afternoon as The Reds go in search of a fourth home win on the bounce.

Dougie Freedman suffered his first defeat as Forest boss with the 2-1 reverse at Charlton on Tuesday night but tomorrow's visit of Boro hands them a great opportunity to bounce back in style against one of the promotion contenders.

Karanka's men currently lead the way in the Sky Bet Championship by a point from Derby and Watford and an entertaining encounter is in store as Forest look to derail Boro's promotion push and return to form themselves.

Team news

Nottingham Forest manager Dougie Freedman confirmed that no new injuries problems were sustained in Tuesday's defeat at Charlton so he could name the same side which started the contest at The Valley.

Dexter Blackstock will make his 150th appearance for Forest should he play any part against Middlesbrough tomorrow but he will be vying with Matty Fryatt and Lars Veldwijk for a spot in The Reds' attack.

Former Forest defender Daniel Ayala is edging closer to a return to the Middlesbrough squad following a month-long lay-off through injury but tomorrow's game will come too soon for Mustapha Carayol who remains sidelined.

Aitor Karanka was given a boost by the return of striker Jelle Vossen in midweek and another of his strikers, former Forest man Patrick Bamford, should be fit to feature tomorrow despite limping off on Tuesday night.

View from the Red corner

Dougie Freedman: “They play in a very structured way. They’ve got very good individual players, and they’ve spent a lot of money very wisely on young and hungry players so we’ve got to make sure that we are there until the 95th minute.

“The game will probably be won between the 80th and 90th minute. We need to make sure we’re still in the game at that time and that we are the team with the momentum in the last ten, because that will be the key to it.

“We need to use our experience at home and hope that the fans are right behind us.”

Click here to read more of the manager's thoughts ahead of the clash with Middlesbrough.

What's the form guide?

Tuesday night's 2-1 defeat at the hands of Charlton Athletic was Forest's first loss under manager Dougie Freedman in his seven matches in charge and now leaves them with an 11-point gap to make up on the top six.

The Reds do go into tomorrow's game on the back of three straight home wins over Wigan, Bolton and Bournemouth and are in fine form in front of goal, scoring 20 goals across Freedman's seven games in charge.

Table-topping Middlesbrough responded to their 2-0 weekend defeat at Sheffield Wednesday in the best possible fashion by dispatching relegation-threatened Millwall by three goals to nil at The Riverside Stadium on Tuesday night.

Boro's promotion charge has stuttered in recent weeks with the loss at Hillsborough following a recent home defeat to Leeds United but home wins over Bolton and Millwall have kept them a point clear at the summit.

Aitor Karanka's men have struggled for form away from home lately and they will be travelling to The City Ground tomorrow looking for a first away league win since their 2-1 victory at Blackpool on 10 February.

Haven't we met before?

Middlesbrough ran out comfortable 3-0 winners in the reverse fixture at The Riverside Stadium on Boxing Day as goals from George Friend, Jelle Vossen and Grant Leadbitter secured victory for the home side.

In the corresponding fixture last season, Forest came from two goals down to take a point as strikes from Matt Derbyshire and Darius Henderson cancelled out earlier goals from Friend and Kei Kamara for Boro.

Forest's last home win over Middlesbrough came back in October 2011 as goals from Marcus Tudgay and Lewis McGugan secured a 2-0 win over the Teessiders at The City Ground.

Are tickets available?

Tickets are still available for tomorrow's game against Middlesbrough.

For more details and for a full list of prices, please click here.

Is there hospitality available?

Hospitality is selling very quickly for Saturday's game against Middlesbrough with many packages already sold out. However, there is still room in Castle Club hospitality (priced at £50+VAT).

For more information on other packages or to make a booking, please e-mail or call 0115 982 4450.

Are there any offers on?

Nottingham Forest are offering supporters new concourse catering options for tomorrow's visit of Middlesbrough.

Until 2.30pm tomorrow afternoon, all bottles of Carlsberg and IPA are down from £3.80 per bottle to £2 while any pie and hot drink meal is down from £5.10 to just £4.

There will fruit bags on offer to the club's young supporters in the family area while chicken curry, rice and naan bread as well as Rollover hotdogs will be available in all areas of the ground.

The above offer is open to both Nottingham Forest and Middlesbrough supporters.

What else is happening?

The Football League's official charity partner for the 2014-15 season, Prostate Cancer UK, will be holding a bucket collection outside the ground before tomorrow's game with Middlesbrough.

For more information, please click here.

What if I can't make the game?

Live audio commentary will be available on Forest Player, as well as free live text commentary on and via @Official_NFFC on Twitter.

Forest Player will also have extended match highlights from 12pm on Sunday, as well as all the reaction from the Forest camp.

Is there a programme?

The official matchday programme is available to buy and download for tomorrow's meeting with Middlesbrough.

The 76-page edition, priced at £3, includes columns from Fawaz Al Hasawi, Dougie Freedman and Chris Cohen as well as a feature interview with Forest goalkeeper Karl Darlow following his 100th appearance for the club.

There is a tribute to former manager Dave Mackay from John McGovern, an in-depth look at the visitors Middlesbrough while The Guardian's chief football writer Daniel Taylor looks back at a moment in Forest's history.

Forest fans are reminded that they can download the official matchday magazine to their iPad or iPhone. Perfect for supporters unable to attend the game, the download can be accessed via this app now.

Hard copies will be available from all the usual outlets around The City Ground.

What are the odds?

Nottingham Forest are the 19/10 outsiders to return to winning ways against Middlesbrough at The City Ground tomorrow with the draw priced at 23/10 and a win for the visitors at 7/5.

A repeat of Forest's 2-1 win over Bournemouth in the last home game has odds of 9/1 or if you fancy The Reds to get revenge on Middlesbrough with a 3-0 victory then that is priced further out at 33/1.

Dexter Blackstock could be in line for his 150th appearance in a Nottingham Forest shirt this weekend and the striker can be backed at 13/2 to score the game's first goal or at 2/1 to score at any time.

For all the latest odds on tomorrow's game, please visit and make a prediction for Forest v Middlesbrough.

Who is in charge?

Referee: Jonathan Moss
Assistant Referees: John Brooks and David Bryan
Fourth official: Mark Heywood

Who else is playing?

Fulham v Bournemouth (Friday, kick-off 7.45pm)
Blackpool v Sheffield Wednesday
Cardiff v Charlton
Derby v Birmingham
Huddersfield v Rotherham
Ipswich v Brentford
Millwall v Norwich
Wigan v Leeds
Wolves v Watford

                   Match Ball Sponsor

                       Peter Higham

                 Programme Sponsor

                      Richard Hudson

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