Huddersfield v Nottingham Forest betting tips: Premier prize at stake
Huddersfield v Nottingham Forest betting tips, odds and preview
The Championship play-off final is billed as the richest game in football and a place in the Premier League is up for grabs as we pick out some Huddersfield v Nottingham Forest betting tips.
The two teams finished third and fourth in the regular season so it is a fitting final as two clubs with a proud history look to return to the top flight.
We have already analysed historical trends in the Championship play-off final but now we focus on the form of the two teams ahead of their Wembley showdown on May 29, which kicks off at 4.30pm and is live on Sky Sports.
Super Cooper has Forest firing
Promotion looked to be out of the question for Forest after the first few weeks of the season when they picked up just one point from their first seven games and Chris Hughton was sacked as manager.
Steven Reid took temporary charge for the next game – ironically at Huddersfield – and a 2-0 win sparked their season into life.
The appointment of former Swansea boss Cooper then proved an inspired move and Forest have been the best team in the Championship ever since, winning more points than champions Fulham and runners-up Bournemouth.
Nine wins from 10 matches in March and April gave them hope of an incredible automatic promotion but a 1-0 defeat at Bournemouth meant they had to settle for the play-offs.
A 2-1 win at Sheffield United put them on track for Wembley and victory looked certain when they extended their advantage at the City Ground but the Blades battled back to win 2-1 on the night and take the tie to penalties.
BRICE SAMBA IS THE HERO AND NOTTINGHAM FOREST ARE GOING TO WEMBLEY!! 🙌
— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) May 17, 2022
Forest eventually held their nerve to win the shoot-out thanks to the heroics of Brice Samba, but the result showed Forest are not as invincible as they may have seemed at times.
They head to Wembley as the 1/2 favourites to win promotion and evens for victory in 90 minutes, with Cooper suggesting their scare in the semi-final will help them heading into the showpiece.
“To get through a two-legged play-off semi-final, you have to do everything,” he said.
“We’ve managed to come through a lot. I would have loved to have won the game 3-1 and walked off but the fact we’ve done it like we have means we’re more tooled up now to go to the final.”
If Forest are to come out on top then Brennan Johnson could well be the hero. The 20-year-old has 19 goals for the season after scoring in each of his last three appearances and has been a revelation in the second half of the season.
Terriers the underdogs once more
Huddersfield leapfrogged Forest into third place in the Championship table and have suffered just two league defeats since the start of December so could feel aggrieved at being seen as such big underdogs.
David Wagner was the man in charge in 2017 when Christopher Schindler’s penalty sent Huddersfield to the Premier League for the first time.
During his time in charge, he often summed up the club’s ethos by saying: “It is not the size of the dog in the fight, it is the size of the fight in the dog.”
The Terriers have again relished proving their critics wrong this season, having started the campaign being widely tipped for relegation.
"HUDDERSFIELD TOWN IN SIGHT OF WEMBLEY!!!"
Jordan Rhodes with a HUGE goal 🙌 pic.twitter.com/siXsc5R7md
— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) May 16, 2022
Few could have predicted their rise which is largely due to a much-improved defence, while midfielder Lewis O’Brien is the heartbeat of the team and surely destined for the top flight regardless of the result here.
Danel Sinani and Sorba Thomas have provided more creativity in attack and both played their part in the 2-1 aggregate victory over Luton in the semi-final.
Sinani gave Town the lead in the first leg at Kenilworth Road but the tie was evenly poised with extra time looming when a free-kick from Thomas was poked home by Jordan Rhodes.
The set-piece delivery of Thomas has been a key part of Huddersfield’s armoury this season and getting him back fit again is a major boost.
With the Welsh winger in the team, Huddersfield are capable of scoring even when the opposition are on top. Centre-backs Tom Lees, Naby Sarr, Levi Colwill and Matty Pearson have all chipped in with useful goals as a result and are often good value in the goalscorer betting.
Town relish a bore draw
The attacking quality on show suggests plenty of goals but Huddersfield’s play-off record certainly does not.
Their last three promotions have all been achieved on penalties after drab goalless stalemates and another 0-0 draw after 90 minutes is an option in Huddersfield v Nottingham Forest betting tips at 17/2.
Huddersfield v Nottingham Forest head-to-head
This is the fourth meeting of the season between the two teams and Forest have the edge 2-1.
As already mentioned, Forest won 2-0 at the John Smith’s Stadium in September but Huddersfield gained revenge with a 1-0 win in the return fixture thanks to a first-half goal from former Derby man Duane Holmes.
The third meeting was in the fifth round of the FA Cup in January but Huddersfield boss Carlos Corberan named a weakened side with his focus remaining on the promotion race.
The likes of Lee Nicholls, Harry Toffolo and Jon Russell were all on the bench while O’Brien was out injured but the visitors took an early lead through Lees before Forest battled back to win 2-1 thanks to goals from Sam Surridge and Ryan Yates.
Huddersfield v Nottingham Forest team news
Apart from defender Pearson, who is not expected to recover in time from a knee injury, Corberan has a fully-fit squad to choose from and has several selection dilemmas, most notably whether to go with Danny Ward or semi-final hero Rhodes up front.
All odds and markets correct as of date of publication