Nottingham Forest have quietly been building one of the strongest frontlines in the Championship.
It may sound bizarre to say that about a team who scored just 61 times in the league last season – but despite the fact they had the third-lowest goal tally in the top half, on paper their attacking options are some of the best in the division.
Of course, playing under two incredibly defensive managers last term didn’t help their forwards flourish. Aitor Karanka is the manager who took Middlesbrough up with just 63 goals, and Martin O’Neill’s teams have averaged just 1.1 goals per game during his cumulative time as Sunderland, Ireland and Forest boss.
With Sabri Lamouchi’s teams’ goals per game record being much higher than that, Forest fans will be hoping that the new manager can utilise their attacking talent to its full potential.
The talent is certainly there in the East Midlands side’s front line.
Lewis Grabban has been one of the Championship’s deadliest hitmen for years, and he’s hit 36 goals over the last two seasons in this division.
Joe Lolley was putting up numbers of the highest quality last season as he reached double figures in terms of both goals and assists.
Albert Adomah is proven quality at this level, and he has scored 18 goals over the past two seasons from the wing.
Finally, in the number 10 role is Joao Carvalho. The Portuguese midfielder contributed to 12 goals last season, and those numbers could still improve as he’s now had a year to get used to English football after joining Forest last summer.
If the Reds can get the best out of these four attacking players, they could be an unstoppable force going forward as there are goals and assists littered throughout their frontline.
Goals were what prevented Forest from challenging for the playoffs last time around as they had a better defensive record than three of the teams that finished in the top six.
Hopefully, goals won’t hold them back this season as they have a top quality front four, and if Labouchi plays in a more expansive fashion the goals could flow at the City Ground this year.