‘We have to keep going’ in battle against the drop says Forest defender

Moussa Niakhate Nottingham Forest

Nottingham Forest defender Moussa Niakhaté has urged his teammates to “keep going” in the Premier League’s race for survival after the Reds’ 2-0 loss to Manchester United at The City Ground on Sunday.

Forest were second best through Sunday’s contest, though they held out until the 32nd minute before winger Antony bundled home from close range after the host’s keeper Kaylor Navas parried an Anthony Martial effort into the Brazilian’s path.

For the majority of the second half, it was one-way traffic and United missed a series of gilt-edged chances before Diogo Dalot finally doubled the visitors’ lead in the 76th-minute, profiting from a clever Antony through ball.

The loss pushed Forest into the division’s bottom three positions alongside Southampton and Leicester City.

Niakhaté convinced Forest will achieve “their goals”

Speaking following a testing afternoon in the Forest defence, 27-year-old Moussa Niakhaté was adamant that he and his teammates weren’t going to give up as the climax of the campaign approaches.

“We came up against a really good team with a good squad of players and a good coach,” he said.

“We knew it would be a tough game and we tried our best defensively, but they have some good players in the likes of (Anthony) Martial, Antony, (Bruno) Fernandes and (Jadon) Sancho. We also have quality, but it wasn’t to be today.

“We are all trying our best to win games. We will not give up, but we have to do more. We have to keep going, we have seven games left and they are like seven finals.

“It’s difficult as the end of the season is getting closer, but I am 100% convinced we will achieve our goals with this squad.

“We trust in each other and we now get to work straight away on Liverpool.”

Moussa Niakhaté battled bravely in a three-man defence alongside Brazilian veteran Felipe and fit-again Scott McKenna, though that trio had little support from midfield and they were often left isolated in one-on-one situations against United’s attackers.

The Red Devils went on to muster an xG of 3.5 over the course of the game and but for a set of five saves from Costa Rican stopper Keylor Navas, Forest’s margin of defeat could have been far greater than it was. The Reds already have the worst goal difference in the Premier League (-32).

Antony Man Utd

Forest’s difficult run in

Nottingham Forest’s tip to Anfield to play Liverpool on April 22nd kicks off a tough-looking seven-game run in for the Reds.

After they are finished on Merseyside, Steve Cooper’s side welcome highflying Brighton to the City Ground, before they head to London to take on a strong Brentford outfit.

On May 8th, Forest host Southampton in what could be a pivotal six-pointer, before they head back to the capital to take on crisis club Chelsea at Stamford Bride five days later.

A week after that, the tough tasks just keep on coming for Forest, who welcome title chasers Arsenal to the Midlands. The relegation contenders finish their 2022/23 league campaign at Selhurst Park on May 28th against Roy Hodgson’s rejuvenated Crystal Palace.

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