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Preview: Swansea City vs. Nottingham Forest - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Wednesday's Championship clash between Swansea City and Nottingham Forest, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Swansea City's automatic promotion hopes from the Championship remain in their own hands as they prepare for Wednesday's visit of Nottingham Forest.

The Swans are four points behind second-placed Brentford and five adrift of Norwich City, though they have two games in hand to play on both sides.

Forest enter the midweek round of fixtures 16th in the table, meanwhile, five points above the relegation zone.


Match preview

Swansea City manager Steve Cooper pictured in February 2021© Reuters

Swansea's away match with Sheffield Wednesday was called off at the weekend, meaning that Steve Cooper's men have had a full week's rest ahead of this clash with Forest.

The Swans' most recent outing ended in defeat, though there is certainly no shame in going down 3-1 to Manchester City - the continent's most in-form side - in the FA Cup.

Cooper's focus is now on winning promotion to the top flight, three years after the Welsh side last competed at that level, and his side are in a great position to achieve that.

They are unbeaten in eight league matches, winning six of those, while at home it is 11 games without defeat, keeping a clean sheet in eight of those matches.

Nottingham Forest manager Chris Hughton pictured on January 23, 2021© Reuters

Forest have a good recent record on their travels, however, having won three on the spin and gone five without defeat. That follows a run of five away losses in a row.

The Reds drew 0-0 at home to Bournemouth on Saturday and have collected eight points from the last 12 on offer - a run that has allowed them to look up the division at long last.

Chris Hughton's men lost the reverse meeting with Swansea 1-0 in November, but they have not lost two league games in a single season in this fixture since 1938-39.

Forest have also kept five clean sheets in their last seven away league trips to Swansea, though they were thumped 5-1 at the Liberty Stadium in the FA Cup less than a month ago.

Swansea City Championship form: DWWDWW
Swansea City form (all competitions): WWDWWL

Nottingham Forest Championship form: LLDWWD
Nottingham Forest form (all competitions): WLDWWD


Team News

Andre Ayew celebrates scoring for Swansea City against Queens Park Rangers on December 26, 2020© Reuters

Cooper handed some of his fringe players a start against Man City, but the likes of Andre Ayew and Conor Hourihane should be back in the XI on Wednesday.

Hourihane has been in superb form since joining on loan from Aston Villa in the January window, scoring in all three of his league appearances.

Even with an additional few days' rest following the Sheffield Wednesday postponement, Steven Benda, Korey Smith and Liam Cullen all remain absent.

As for Forest, Samba Sow and Harry Arter are among their absentees for this trip to South Wales.

Hughton did not make a single substitute in the goalless draw with Bournemouth, suggesting that he is happy with his first-choice XI.

However, Yuri Ribeiro is pushing left-back Gaetan Bong for a starting spot here.

Striker Glenn Murray has scored four goals in his last five league appearances against Swansea.

Swansea City possible starting lineup:
Woodman; Naughton, Bennett, Guehi; Roberts, Fulton, Hourihane, Grimes, Bidwell; Ayew, Lowe

Nottingham Forest possible starting lineup:
Samba; Christie, Worrall, Figueiredo, Ribeiro; Cafu, Garner; Knockaert, Krovinovic, Lolley; Murray


SM words green background

We say: Swansea City 2-1 Nottingham Forest

Forest will be out for some revenge in midweek after being thumped by Swansea in the FA Cup last month.

The Reds have gone four games without defeat since then, keeping three clean sheets, but Swansea are bang in form and should have enough to complete a rare league double in this fixture.


Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a home win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home Win:data


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Swansea City manager Steve Cooper pictured on January 9, 2021
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Wednesday's key events


ROWING
· Team GB have dominated the men's coxless fours in recent Olympics, winning on each of the last five occasions, but this year they face some stiff competition. They are one of four rowing medal contenders for Great Britain today (2.10am)

SWIMMING
· Katie Ledecky and Ariarne Titmus face off again in the women's 200m freestyle final, with the latter having already come out on top in the 400m event (2.41am)
· Team GB's Abbie Wood is among the medal contenders in the women's 200m individual medley final, while teammate Alicia Wilson will also take part. USA's Kate Douglass was the fastest qualifier, while world and Olympic record holder Katinka Hosszu is also involved (3.45am)
· Katie Ledecky could make it two golds in one morning as she goes into the 1500m freestyle final as heavy favourite, having broken the Olympic record in qualifying (3.54am)
· Team GB were by far the fastest qualifiers for the men's 4x200m freestyle relay final and will therefore be favourites for another gold in the pool (4.26am)

RUGBY SEVENS
· Team GB take on New Zealand in the first men's semi-final, having been beaten by reigning champions Fiji but then come from behind to overcome USA on day two (3am)
· The sevens gold medal match takes place at Tokyo Stadium, with the winner of Great Britain vs. New Zealand taking on either Argentina or Fiji (10am)

ARTISTIC GYMNASTICS
· Joe Fraser and James Hall compete for Team GB in the men's all-around final (3.15am-6.10am)

CYCLING
· Anna Shackley will take part in the women's road time trial (from 3.30am)
· Geraint Thomas and Tao Geoghegan Hart have medal ambitions for Great Britain in the men's road time trial, although both will need to recover from the crash they suffered on Saturday (6am)

DIVING
· Jack Laugher bids to retain his men's 3m synchro diving title alongside new partner Daniel Goodfellow (7am)

EQUESTRIAN
· Charlotte Dujardin will look to add to her already legendary status with a third successive Olympic individual dressage title (9.30am-1.25pm)

> Today's schedule in full
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