Nottingham Forest midfielder Ryan Yates has described James Garner, who has been hired by Manchester United, as “one of the best” specialists in the championship.
Yates made the confession for Forest against Sheffield United on Saturday afternoon in Bramall Lane in the first leg of the semi-final of their Championship play-off. Forest finished fourth in the championship last weekend and will close horns with the Blades on a ravishing two-legged draw in a bid to reach Wembley.
United mercenary Garner, who has ambitions to become a key part of Erik ten Hag’s plans at Old Trafford next season, has played a key role in Forest’s success this season, delivering a string of outstanding performances. He has played 46 games across all competitions and has proven to be a key member of their fairytale rise in the league they have enjoyed since Steve Cooper took charge in September.
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In total, Garner, who helped Forest reach the quarter-finals of the FA Cup this season, contributed directly to 14 goals in all competitions, scoring four times and providing ten assists. Much of his assists came through set plays, with his corners often devastating.
And for fellow Forest midfielder Yates, Garner, who is 21, has made himself one of the leading figures when it comes to set pieces this season. He has raved about his deliveries and insists that they go “under the radar”.
“The delivery has to be good, it has to be in the right areas,” Yates said, as quoted by Nottinghamshire Live. “We have one of the best in the league on that in James. He is incredible.
“A lot of credit has to go to him. It’s probably going to stay a little under the radar. He practices them all the time, and he’s such a threat.
“There has to be so much credit going up, to the analyst team. You wouldn’t believe how much time they spend watching corners and free kicks. It’s unbelievable.
“They give us all the information, we have to go and execute it. It’s a culmination of all that.
“I think we can score even more. The best teams, the Man Citys and Liverpools, have scored the most goals from set pieces this year.”
“You wouldn’t think that of Manchester City, but they have scored the most goals from set pieces in the Premier League. It just goes to show that if you want to be on top you have to convert your chances into set pieces.” †
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