Nottingham Forest embarrassed themselves in losing 3-2 to Bournemouth yesterday but one bright spark was the performance of Cheikhou Kouyate.
It’s hard to pull positives after such a capitulation. The Reds were 2-0 up at half-time and preceded to turn in an unacceptable second-half showing.
Goals from Philip Billing, Dominic Solanke and Jaiden Anthony saw a hapless Cherries home after losing 9-0 to Liverpool the week previously.
Goals from Kouyate and Brennan Johnson saw the Reds leading 2-0 at half-time, with Forest seemingly heading for a big three points.
It was Kouyate who opened the scoring for the Reds, powering home a header from a Morgan Gibbs-White corner.
He was arguably the surprise name on the team sheet yesterday. He was handed a second consecutive start after playing centre-back against Manchester City.
This time he played in central midfield and he didn’t disappoint. He played alongside Ryan Yates and covered every single blade of grass.
Kouyate hasn’t been signed to score goals but it was a wonderful header that opened his account in Forest colours.
The 32-year-old was a shock signing on a free transfer following his departure from Crystal Palace.
He has bags of Premier League experience though and yesterday he reiterated why the club signed him.
Kouyate provides Forest bright spark
The experienced performer was sensational yesterday and it’s a shame he had to go off in the second half.
In truth, it seemed as though he may have to depart earlier when he appeared to be injured in the first half.
Kouyate looks integral already at this stage. He roared into tackles, passed the ball well and also showed unbelievable movement for a big man.
Forest have to get back to winning ways quickly and keeping Kouyate in the team has to be the way to go in the future.