May 21, 2024

Stuart Pearce and Martin Keown have offered differing predictions ahead of this weekend’s clash between Nottingham Forest and Everton.

The two sides face off at City Ground on Saturday (2 December) with three vital Premier League points on the line.

Everton are five points from safety after recently being deducted 10 points, while Forest boss Steve Cooper is under pressure after a barren run.

When asked what he thought would happen, Keown responded, “This is a massive game for both clubs,” live on talkSPORT [1 December, 12:59].

Can Everton overcome Forest, who have lost three of their past four games despite their tendency to win at home?

“I believe Everton may potentially pinch something, upsetting the apple cart. This season, there have been far too many draws from Forest’s perspective.

“With all the noise, it might just be easier for them away from home. I can see them maybe getting a win now.”

Pearce disagreed, saying: “I think it’s got 1-1 written all over it – a low-scoring draw.

“I think Everton are finding it difficult to score goals, while Forest have not got that sparkle they had at home last year.”

Target the win

Prior to the points deduction, Everton would have approached this trip to the City Ground in a stress-free manner.

That is far from the case now, as a defeat this weekend could potentially see the gap on safety grow even further.

While the Toffees’ situation looks bleak after a 3-0 loss to Manchester United last week, they have still won half of their last eight matches.

Over the same period, Forest have won just once – a 2-0 victory over Aston Villa on 5 November.

Everton

Keown is right to point out that Forest’s home form is decent, having won five, drawn three and lost just one of their last nine there since April.

The Reds did lose last time out at City Ground to Brighton and Hove Albion, though, and Everton have won three of their last four away games.

It makes for an intriguing contest, one in which there is no reason Everton cannot come away from with three vital points.

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