Nottingham Forest host Sheffield United in the second leg of the semi-final of the EFL Championship promotion playoffs on the 17th of May 2022. The first leg resulted in Forest defeating the Blades 2-1 at the Bramall Lane, with goals from Jack Colback and Brennan Johnson. Sander Berge netted for Sheffield United in stoppage time, but it was too late. The winner of this tie will make it to Wembley and face off either against Huddersfield Town or Luton Town in the final.
Having won the first leg by two goals to one, Nottingham Forest will look to defend, or better, extend their lead in this tie to make it to the final in Wembley. Jack Colback and Brennan Johnson netted in the 10th and 71st minute, respectively, in the first leg. Forest are the second-best counter-attacking team in the EFL Championship this season behind only Coventry City. They average over two and a half counterattacks every game.
Shown above are the attacking performances of Nottingham Forest in this season of the EFL Championship. Forest have the third-most goals, fourth-most expected goals and the fifth-most shots. With 73 goals scored from 549 shots, they have a shot conversion rate of 7.52 shots per goal scored. Nottingham Forest have also attempted the most dribbles of any team in the division, with 1384, and a success rate of 68.8%.
Nottingham Forest have also slightly outperformed their xG per game of 1.41 by netting 1.43 goals per game. Creatively, Forest are performing just above average, ranking in the 65th percentile, 53rd percentile and 64th percentile for key passes per game, smart passes per game and through balls per game, respectively. They also rank in the upper quintile for pass accuracy into the final third.
Sheffield United lost the first leg 1-2 at home to Nottingham Forest. Sander Berge netted for the Blades in stoppage time, but it was not enough. They will be hoping to overturn this deficit at the City Ground. In the regular season, it was a 1-1 draw in both the meetings between these two teams. While Nottingham Forest have the second-most counterattacks in the division, Sheffield United have the second-most positional attacks.
Oliver Norwood is Sheffield United’s most successful threat creator in this EFL Championship season from both open play as well as from set-pieces. However, it is Morgan Gibbs-White who has the most assists for the Blades, with nine to his name. Sheffield United produce most of the threat from just outside the opposition’s penalty box.
Nottingham Forest are aiming to make history as they are aiming for their first Premier League campaign since the 1998/99 season. For them to do that, they first have to try and extend the lead they have in the first leg against Sheffield United. The Blades also are trying to return to the Premier League after just one season.