Championship duo dreaming of Liverpool tie

Steve Cooper

The priority for Nottingham Forest and Huddersfield Town this season may be securing promotion to the Premier League, but both teams are also eyeing an FA Cup quarter-final tie with Liverpool (Forest 10/11, Draw 5/2, Huddersfield 7/2 Match Result).

The two teams will go head-to-head at the City Ground on Monday night in the final fifth-round tie of the season, with the winner knowing that a home clash with Jurgen Klopp’s title chasers awaits in the last eight.

Forest (60/1 to win FA Cup) have already seen off two top-flight teams en route to this stage, as after getting the better of Arsenal in round three, Steve Cooper’s side then dismantled cup holders Leicester City 4-1, with both those successes coming on home soil.

Cooper has certainly turned Forest’s fortunes around since his appointment as head coach in September, as the club were bottom of the table when he arrived, but they have since moved to the cusp of the Championship playoff positions (Forest 7/4 to secure top-six finish).

A run of just one defeat in 11 matches across all competitions has helped Forest’s cause, as has an unbeaten home record in 2022, although the last visiting team to win at the City Ground was Huddersfield – a 1-0 success back on December 30.

Huddersfield’s form is even more impressive than Forest’s, as Carlos Corberan’s side are unbeaten in 18 games across all competitions, while they will also head into Monday’s tie on a four-game winning streak.

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The most recent of those successes – a 3-0 home win over Peterborough United on Friday night – saw the Terriers move up to second in the Championship standings, with a return to the Premier League after a three-year absence now a distinct possibility (Huddersfield 6/1 to be promoted).

Like Forest, Huddersfield (100/1 to win FA Cup) have already seen off top-flight opposition in this season’s FA Cup, claiming a 2-1 victory over Burnley at Turf Moor in round three, before they booked their place in the last 16 with a narrow victory over Yorkshire rivals Barnsley.

Both sides were in league action on Friday, which means managers Cooper and Corberan could look to rotate their starting XIs.

Forest will be boosted by the return of goalkeeper Brice Samba following a three-match ban, while on-loan wing-back Max Lowe is also available after being ineligible to face parent club Sheffield United last time out.

Huddersfield’s Levi Colwill has tested positive for Covid and looks set to miss out, while Pipa, Jonathan Hogg and Carel Eiting are among the players pushing for recalls.

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