English Premier League

Nottingham Forest v Burnley: Gibbs-White to inspire home win

Nottm Forest boss Steve Cooper
Will Steve Cooper be applauding a Nottm Forest victory on Monday night

After a trio of tough away games Nottingham Forest host newly-promoted Burnley on Monday Night Football, and Mike Norman is backing their star man to lead them to victory...

Nottingham Forest v Burnley
Monday, 20:00
Live on Sky Sports Football

Cooper's men make promising start

When the 2023/24 fixture list was released you wouldn't have been offered long odds on Nottingham Forest being bottom of the table at the first international break.

Three of their first four games were away from home, at Arsenal, Manchester United and Chelsea no less. That's an incredibly tough start by anyone's standards, let alone a team that only avoided relegation with a few games to spare last season.

But Steve Cooper's men have performed admirably. They went down by just a single goal at the Emirates, raced into a 2-0 lead at Old Trafford before losing late on, and recorded a terrific 1-0 win at Stamford Bridge, meaning along with the home win over Sheffield United, Forest sit in mid table with a very respectable six points.

The win over the Blades means that Cooper's men have now won four home league games on the spin going back to last season. They're a strong side at the City Ground having defeated the likes of Arsenal, Brighton, Liverpool and Tottenham last term as well as drawing with Chelsea and Man City.

Leaky Clarets still without a point

Like Forest, newly-promoted Burnley were also handed a tough start to the season, having to play Man City, Aston Villa and Tottenham. But unlike Forest, the Clarets' first three games were all on home soil.

Defeat in each game was perhaps no huge surprise, but worryingly for Burnley fans Vincent Kompany's men lost all three while shipping 11 goals in the process.

Away from home however, Burnley were excellent last season in the Championship, ending their campaign unbeaten in 13 road trips, winning nine of those games and drawing four.

And ahead of Monday night's trip to the City Ground Kompany's men can draw inspiration from the fact that their only away game this term was in fact at Forest in the League Cup, a game they won 1-0, albeit in a match that saw very different line-ups to what we're likely to see on Monday night.

Forest deserving favourites

Trying to predict Nottm Forest's starting XI is quite a task these days given the amount of new faces at the club, but Cooper has a relatively full strength squad to choose from with perhaps only Danilo a doubt after picking up an injury in the win at Chelsea.

Anthony Elanga came back from international duty early with a minor hamstring injury, but both he, and Serge Aurier, are expected to come through late fitness tests.

Kompany also has the core of his squad available but could possibly make changes in an attempt to tighten up his defence, so at the time of writing, predicting the starting line-ups is a bit of a headache.

Still, a near to full strength Forest side ought to be good enough to take all three points, and odds of 11/102.11 in the Match Odds 90 market make plenty of appeal.

The worry is that Burnley's away form was very good last term, but that came in a much weaker division and this season they've been all at sea in the three games they've played. Forest's home form was excellent last season and if close to their best they look a decent bet to register a win.

If you disagree, Burnley can be backed at 21/10 with the Draw being available at 15/82.88.

Back Nottm Forest to beat Burnley @ 11/102.11

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Count on Gibbs-White impressing

I probably wasn't the only one who was surprised at Morgan Gibbs-White's large transfer fee when he joined Forest last season, but I have to admit he now looks worth every penny and has turned into one of the Premier League's best attacking midfielders.

The 23-year-old is usually pivotal in Forest's attacks, registering five shots in his four games this term. He crosses the ball an average of around five times per game and has one assist and one big chance created to his name so far this season.

Given Brennan Johnson's transfer to Tottenham I expect MGW to take on extra attacking responsibilities for Forest, and I'm happy to back him to regsiter at least one assist, at least one shot on target, and Forest to register at least five shots on target in a Bet Builder that pays out at 13/27.50.

Back MGW 1+ Shot on Target, Forest 5+ Shots on Target and MGW Anytime Assist @ 13/27.50

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Recommended bets

Mike's 2023/34 Profit/Loss

Staked: 6 pts
Returned: 3.6 pts
P/L: -2.4 pts

*Base on 2 pts win main bet (first listed or only bet), 1 pt win all other bets

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