Joe Lolley has nothing to prove to anybody at Nottingham Forest, but a point was made in his latest outing against Luton.

Maybe there was a nagging doubt in the back of his mind.

He had found himself on the bench again for the trip to Reading.

With another tactical tweak made, Yuri Ribeiro lined up on the left wing against the Royals.

A more suitable fit for said berth spent 69 minutes twiddling his thumbs.

One week on, and Lolley had two goals to his name inside an hour versus Luton.

His name was back on the team sheet from the off.

A hard-working forward who feeds off confidence looked more like his former self.

Unfamiliar questions have been put to the 27-year-old this season.

Once high standards are set, any dip below that level is going to be scrutinised.

Challenges

Original Image: NFFC/Graphic Design: Beth Davenport

Lolley knows that and has faced those challenges head on.

Not once, despite struggling for a spark at times, has one of the City Ground’s most prized assets gone into hiding.

The run of the ball has not always gone his way, the shooting radar has been a little off, but Lolley keeps coming back for more.

Against the Hatters, everything fell into place.

Reward was found from having a go.

His first goal on Sunday was a direct result of trying his luck – buying a ticket for the metaphorical lottery.

A second of the afternoon was a stunner.

The Forest faithful have seen plenty of those in the recent past, with the hope being that there are many more to come.

Lolley told the club’s official website of his showing: “In terms of productivity and scoring two important goals it was probably my best performance of the season so far.

“I didn’t think I started the game too well, maybe it was the 12 o’clock kick-off! After 15 minutes or so I felt myself getting into the game and took it on from there.”

Ability

 

The bar has been raised again.

Can Lolley continue to clear it for the remainder of the 2019-20 campaign?

Sabri Lamouchi has said in the Nottingham Post: “We want to see Joe Lolley like that every game, home and away, because he is a key player for us.

“He can make the difference any time he wants. He was man of the match and I know his quality – everybody knows his quality.

“We will need him. We need all of the players in this squad, because the race is long, tough and difficult for everybody.”

Lolley has the ability and potential to lead Forest’s push towards the finishing post.

He reached double figures last season in terms of goals and assists.

A brace against Luton has taken him to seven efforts this term, while laying on five more for others (in all competitions).

With there still 19 games to take in, Lolley can still emulate his achievements from a year previous.

For a player who has been questioned at times, that would be a serious point proved.

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