Nottingham Forest manager Chris Hughton says he is “very determined” to keep first-choice central defensive pairing Joe Worrall and Scott McKenna together ahead of next season.
Worrall and McKenna have established themselves as Forest’s first-choice centre-halves under Chris Hughton, despite having both endured problems with injuries this season.
Worrall has made 27 league appearances this season having been missing for over two months combined due to an ankle injury and a cracked rib. McKenna, meanwhile, has made 21 league appearances, missing plenty of first-team action between December and March due to an ankle problem.
But the pair look set to end the season as Forest’s first-choice pairing, helping the Reds boast the sixth best defensive record in the Championship having conceded only 41 goals this season.
Naturally, this is something Chris Hughton wants to keep in place for next season, as he looks to work on things at the other end of the pitch. Forest are one of the lowest scorers in the division, having netted only 34 times this term.
Tomorrow night, Worrall and McKenna’s defensive qualities will be tested as they prepare to come up against Birmingham City – a side known for their physical prowess going forward in the likes of Lukas Jutkiewicz.
But looking ahead to the future, Hughton spoke of his determination to keep Worrall and McKenna at the club and injury-free next season.
Speaking to FLW in today’s press conference, he said: “I’m very determined (to keep hold of them).
“Whenever I talk about any individuals in the team, it’s not just about them. If I look at what we’ve got in the centre-half position, I want as strong a group as we can because of the nature of this division.
“Toby (Tobias Figueiredo) has played a lot of games too, and it’s an important position.
“We’ve lost a lot of games with Scott and with Joe this season, so I hope they can have injury-free seasons next season.”