Sheffield United v Nottingham Forest Live commentary and team news: Forest have dismal play-off record and need to rise to face in-form Blades

Sheffield United will host Nottingham Forest in the first leg of the Championship play-off semi-final this weekend.

Forest only managed a draw at Hull on the final day of the season and had to settle for a fourth place finish.

Sheffield United take on Nottingham Forest in the Championship play-offs

Steve Cooper’s side have taken just one point from their last two games as they missed out on automatic promotion and now need to get back on their feet.

United, meanwhile, are in fine form for the play-offs and crushed champions Fulham 4-0 at Bramall Lane last time out.

These two have twice drawn 1-1 in the regular season and will now face off to reach the Championship play-off final at Wembley on May 29.

Sheffield United v Nottingham Forest: talkSPORT commentary

This first leg semi-final of the championship play-offs will take place on Saturday May 14.

talkSPORT 2 will have exclusive coverage of the match at Bramall Lane starting at 3pm.

Dan Windle will be your host and commentary will come from Ian Danter and former Scotland striker Chris Iwelumo.

To tune into talkSPORT or talkSPORT 2, click HERE for the live stream.

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Sheffield United v Nottingham Forest Live commentary and team news: Forest have dismal play-off record and need to rise to face in-form Blades
Cooper’s Forest will have to get up for the play-offs

Sheffield United v Nottingham Forest: Team news

Morgan Gibbs-White is expected to start for United.

Gibbs-White, on loan from Wolves, recovered from a blow in time for the win over Fulham but was taken off late in the game as a precaution.

George Baldock is in contention after returning to the bench as an unused substitute last week following a hamstring injury.

Billy Sharp hasn’t been ruled out at some point during the play-offs as he returns from a long-term calf injury.

Forest boss Steve Cooper will make sweeping changes to his squad after dropping seven players for their final game of the regular season at Hull.

Ryan Yates and Jack Colback are set to feature after ignoring minor injuries while Steve Cook and Djed Spencer are also cleared to return.

Brennan Johnson, who came off the bench to score a late Hull equalizer, and Sam Surridge and Scott McKenna are expected to return.

However, Lewis Grabban, Keinan Davis and Max Lowe are still on the sidelines.

Sheffield United v Nottingham Forest: What was said?

Forest boss Steve Cooper: “The league position and points tally are the highest for a long time, we come into these play-offs in a very good place and are looking forward to the games against Sheffield United.

“You look at the teams that didn’t make the play-offs, it shows how good the guys have been.

“There’s no doubt there’s been a brilliant effort from the players. Trying to get automatic promotion with two games to go shows you how we’ve become a very good team.

“We have everything we need to do well in the play-offs, we just have to make sure we support each other and believe in what we are doing. We will be ready for that.

Sheffield United v Nottingham Forest Live commentary and team news: Forest have dismal play-off record and need to rise to face in-form Blades
Heckingbottom’s Sheffield United crushed Fulham last time out

Sheffield United v Nottingham Forest: Match facts

  • Nottingham Forest have won just one of their eight Football League play-off matches (D2 L5), failing to reach the final in any of their previous four attempts (2002-03, 2006-07, 2009 -10, 2010-11).
  • This is Sheffield United’s fifth appearance in the second-tier play-offs, with the Blades reaching the final on three of the previous four occasions (1996-97, 2002-03 and 2008-09), despite not having never won a promotion via this method. before.
  • This is the second time Sheffield United and Nottingham Forest have met in the second tier play-offs, with the Blades winning 5-4 on aggregate in 2002-03 (1-1 away, 4-3 home) .
  • Sheffield United are unbeaten in their last eight home meetings with Nottingham Forest in all competitions (W3 D5), since a 2-1 defeat in April 2004.
  • The two league meetings between Sheffield United and Nottingham Forest this season ended 1-1, with Forest equalizing late in both games (83rd and 90th minute respectively).
  • Brennan Johnson finished the league campaign with 16 goals and 10 assists – one of five players in the division to reach double figures for both – while being the first Nottingham Forest player to manage that in a second-tier season since Joe Lolley in 2018-19. .
  • Iliman Ndiaye has scored in each of Sheffield United’s last three regular season league games. The last player to score in four straight appearances for the Blades in all competitions was David McGoldrick in January 2019.
  • The team that finished fifth have won the first leg of the Championship play-off semi-final just once in the last nine campaigns (D3 L5), with Aston Villa beating West Bromwich Albion in 2018-19.

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