Nottingham Forest boast one of the finest strikers in the Championship, and the goal machine that is Ben Watson, but who else is chipping in?

In the current league campaign, Lewis Grabban leads the way with five efforts to his name.

No surprise there.

Joe Lolley has taken his haul to three, having reached double figures in 2018-19.

More will be required from him.

The reborn Watson has netted on two occasions, the same return as Albert Adomah, while there are four players on one.

Two of those are defenders – Michael Dawson and Matty Cash.

The latter broke the deadlock for 2019-20 on the opening day against West Brom, while the former recorded his first Forest goal in 15 years during a home win over Birmingham.

Those at the back are going to be required to make an impact at both ends of the field.

And that has been an issue at times for the Reds.

Valid

Original Images: Nottingham Forest/Graphic Design: Beth Davenport

European Cup winner Kenny Burns has said in the Nottingham Post: “Different players have been chipping in with the goals, and we need to keep that up.

“I’d like to see the centre-backs scoring a few more. And we need to keep seeing goals from the likes of Joe Lolley, Joao Carvalho, Albert Adomah and Matty Cash.

“It can’t just be down to Lewis Grabban to find the back of the net all the time.”

The point regarding centre-halves, and defenders in general, is valid.

Dawson is hardly renowned for his goalscoring prowess, and neither is Joe Worrall.

Back in the 2017-18 campaign, the younger of those home-grown stars was the only centre-half on Forest’s books to hit the net.

Last season, three managed that feat – with all of them joining midway through the campaign.

Masked man Yohan Benalouane made himself an instant hero when helping to down Derby, Alexander Milosevic hammered home against Middlesbrough, while Molla Wague was prolific for a spell when recording three efforts.

He is no longer at the club, having seen a short-term loan come to an end, while Benalouane has been injured and slipping down the pecking order alongside a Swedish colleague.

The only other defensive-minded player to register on the scoresheet in 2018-19 was Jack Robinson (2), while Eric Lichaj (1) joined Worrall on that roll of honour a year earlier.

Haul

RONALDO NEEDS TO STOP WHINING.

In 2016-17, four men – including Damien Perquis and Thomas Lam – managed two efforts apiece, while nobody got more than one in 2014-15.

Sandwiched between those seasons, Matt Mills showed the way forward in 2015-16 by bagging five times.

And turning the clock back even further, Luke Chambers collected a healthy haul of six in 2010-11.

Over the course of the last 10 years, a man now on the books at Ipswich is Forest’s top-scoring defender with nine goals in the Championship.

Greg Halford is next on seven – but didn’t always operate at the back – with Mills on six and Wes Morgan five.

Burns is right to suggest that more is required from that area if ultimate targets are to be hit.

Keeping the ball out of the Forest net will always be their top priority, but hitting the one down the other end is a useful habit to get into.

The Reds have posed more of a threat from set-pieces under Sabri Lamouchi, which bodes well and should help to conjure up more opportunities for the big men at the back.

The little ‘uns, Cash and Co, can also push on up the flanks and look to get themselves into dangerous areas from open play – offering assistance to Grabban and friends in the final third.

If Forest can find a steady stream of goals from those sources, then another important box will be ticked in a quest to conquer the second tier and head back to the Premier League Promised Land.

Have something to tell us about this article?