Nottingham Forest head coach Steve Cooper has lauded Ryan Yates after handing the midfielder a new contract at the City Ground. The Reds warrior will now stay on Trentside until 2025 after extending his deal by two years.

Even his harshest critics can agree that Yates deserves his new deal. Since checking in at Forest in September, Cooper has started to unleash the untapped potential within the 24-year-old.

Yates has scored four goals in his last six games, with three of those coming in the last three games. He scored a vital last gasp equaliser at Sheffield United and also a long-range screamer against Reading on Saturday.

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He has really proved himself as a quality box-to-box option in recent weeks. Following the signing of his new deal, Cooper has been raving about the young midfield general.

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The head coach told The Athletic: “He really typifies what I want and what I believe the culture should be here.

“He is very selfless – he is all about the greater good. He knows that he and the club have to improve still, we have to work hard to get to the levels we want to be at because we’re not there yet.

“He’s a really good player and it is good that it’s been recognised, not just with the contract but with the supporters.”

Yates starting to prove his worth at Forest

The midfielder has had his critics in the past. Right now, however, he is one of the first names on Cooper’s team sheet.

At the moment he’s doing everything that a box-to-box midfielder should be doing and few can argue with his current form.

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Yates does have work to do. Both he and Cooper have alluded to the fact but he’s showing enough lately to suggest he’s capable.

The 24-year-old has captained Forest on occasions this season and that could be a role he fulfils more often than not in the future.

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