Nottingham Forest played out an entertaining 2-2 draw against La Liga outfit Real Sociedad to give Sabri Lamouchi plenty to ponder ahead of the new season.
Joe Worrall gave the Reds an early lead after just four minutes at the City Ground. He rifled home from Tiago Silva’s exquisite corner. Roberto López swiftly levelled for the visitors after a mix-up at the back.
The Reds were able to retake the lead before half-time courtesy of Lewis Grabban’s cool finish. However, Näis Djouahra’s strike at the death ensured the Reds had to settle for a draw.
Forest’s next first-team outing is next Saturday when West Bromwich Albion arrive on Trentside.
After last night’s promising display against quality opposition, we looked at three takeaways from the pre-season contest:
Tiago Silva looks class
The 26-year-old stood-out last week against Crystal Palace, and he impressed again here.
It took just a matter of minutes for him to showcase his quality. His delivery from set-pieces throughout the game was superb, and his corner for the opening goal put it on a plate for Worrall.
This performance already had fans comparing him to João Carvalho. Will they be able to play in the same team when the £13 million man returns from injury?
Of course, it remains to be seen if Silva can make an impact in the Championship, but the last two games have proved he has the ability to do so.
Understandably, there has been a lot of scepticism about Forest’s new Portuguese imports. The disappointment of Diogo Gonçalves and Gil Dias last season is a key reason behind this.
Alfa Semedo looked slightly off the pace against Crystal Palace last week. However, he was able to give a much better account of himself in this match.
The 21-year-old’s style of play isn’t dissimilar to that of Manchester United’s Paul Pogba, albeit with a better work rate. His pace and range of passing allowed him to dictate the tempo throughout.
He’s very highly-rated by his parent club Benfica, and it’s beginning to become clear as to why that is the case.
Cash to play at right-back?
It would seem that if the season started tomorrow, Matty Cash may well be asked to play right-back by Sabri Lamouchi.
That would undoubtedly cause some bafflement among some supporters who can’t understand the logic of playing him ahead of Tendayi Darikwa who is a recognised right-back.
Against Palace and Sociedad, however, Cash didn’t do a bad job.
Darikwa featured for Zimbabwe at the Africa Cup of Nations over the summer and may not have fully recovered from his exploits. He may need a few more weeks to be ready for the demands of the Championship.
For that reason, it seems likely that Cash could be named at right-back against West Bromwich Albion next weekend.