Nottingham Forest are still alive in their battle against survival and Steve Hodge has claimed that Neco Williams surprised him yesterday. The Reds did go an eleventh game without a win against Liverpool at Anfield but there was a sign of life here.
Many feared an implosion when Diogo Jota scored from close range in the first minute of the second half. But it was different on this occasion with Williams firing past Alisson moments later to restore parity.
Williams used to play for Liverpool, leaving in the summer to sign for Forest for £17 million. The Reds snapped him up on a long-term contract and he’s endured a bit of a frustrating season.
The youngster hasn’t always been considered the first choice at right-back by Steve Cooper. Serge Aurier has taken on that role but he’s currently injured and is unavailable.
Williams played well against Liverpool yesterday. He got forward well and was largely impressive defensively against a glut of attacking options deployed by Jurgen Klopp.
Hodge has admitted that the Wales international did something that surprised him and when he scored he told BBC Radio Nottingham: “I didn’t expect that to happen so soon!”
Williams surprised Hodge in Liverpool clash
This was a different version of Forest. This was a team that rolled their sleeves up and showed their army of travelling supporters that they won’t leave the Premier League without a fight.
The Reds tried their best. They got back into the game twice during the 3-2 defeat and should have equalised for a third time when Brennan Johnson hit the bar in the second half.
Forest fans don’t expect a team that wins every week, particularly at this level. The mandatory requirement, however, is that the team gives everything and yesterday they really did showcase that quality.
Williams was decent throughout the contest yesterday. He will hope to continue in fine form and keep proving his doubters wrong as we approach the end of the season.