Nottingham Forest climbed into the Championship play-off places with a 1-0 win over Sheffield United at the City Ground on Saturday.

The Reds’ win came courtesy of Lewis Grabban’s ninth goal of the campaign and his deft header earned Forest an invaluable three points in their quest for promotion to the Premier League.

Forest performed impeccably well during the second half in particular and the result certainly made amends for an abject defeat in midweek to Burton Albion in the EFL Cup.

The official man of the match on the afternoon was announced as Michael Dawson, but it was one of his team-mates that was perhaps more deserving of such an accolade.

Tendayi Darikwa was signed last summer from Burnley and he picked the perfect game in which to turn in his best performance in a Forest shirt, offering a timely reminder of his qualities to boss Aitor Karanka.

NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 03: Nottingham Forest’s Tendayi Darikwa and Sheffield United’s Enda Stevens during the Sky Bet Championship match between Nottingham Forest and Sheffield United at City Ground on November 3, 2018 in Nottingham, England. (Photo by Rachel Holborn – CameraSport via Getty Images)

The 26-year-old performed admirably at right-back, keeping an in-form Sheffield United at bay, whilst his qualities going forward didn’t go unnoticed either.

Boss Karanka signed Sam Byram on loan during the summer and it had looked like Darikwa might fall down the pecking order on the back of his arrival. Saidy Janko also arrived on loan following an injury to Byram and the ex-Chesterfield defender has been forced to be patient at periods during this season.

Given his performance yesterday it seems pretty clear that Darikwa is up for the battle when it comes to places in Karanka’s starting line-up, whilst his performance will have gone a long way towards proving his fierce critics wrong.

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