Neil Warnock issued a weather warning ahead of Boro’s clash at Nottingham Forest tonight: he expects a bright and breezy display from a side in danger of being blown off course.
Tonight’s Championship clash is in some doubt with Forest braced for torrential rain with an angry Storm Christoph expected to lash the East Midlands throughout the day.
The pitch is covered but the ground is just yards from the River Trent and with flood alerts and weather in place there must be a question-mark over the game.
Boro boss Warnock is desperate to play as he looks to bounce back from a laboured 1-0 home defeat to Birmingham City on Saturday and a run of three defeats in four.
But he admits that the weather is key. “It will be difficult conditions as they’re expecting horrendous rain down there and it wouldn’t surprise me if it was off,” he told the local press. “They’ve told us they’re putting a tent up to try and keep the game on but they’re expecting a month’s rain in two days down in Nottingham and that area. We’ll have to see what’s what.”
Warnock desperately wants the game on. After two defeats in three in the league plus an FA Cup exit at Brentford his side are in danger of losing touch with the play-off pack if they go down to in-form Forest.
Since the arrival of new boss Chris Hughton the home side have gone seven games unbeaten and have won the last two to claw away from the relegation zone
If the game goes ahead Boro will have to improve markedly to match them after paying the price for a slow start, lack-lustre display and poor finishing last time out.
“We have to go down there and get back to basics,” he said. “We won’t be bullied out of it. I thought we were bullied a bit in the first 30 minutes against Birmingham and we can’t repeat that.”
On the plus side, Warnock will be boosted by the return to full fitness of some of his key players who were still struggling with the after effects of Covid at the weekend.
Front two Britt Assombalonga and Duncan Watmore are ready to go after making just cameos from the bench against Brum.
“They should be okay,” said Warnock. “They’ve both definitely looked better. I couldn’t have played them from the start against Birmingham. I never thought they’d even be on the bench looking at them on Friday. Britt looked a lot brighter yesterday and said he felt a lot better. So did Duncan so I’ve no problems at all with those two. They’ll be in my thoughts from the start now.”
Kick off is scheduled for 19.00 tonight, Wednesday 20th January 2021.
Do you have a story, something to say or an idea for what we should cover on The Tees Online? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.