United loanee James Garner delivers hugely impressive performance for Forest in 4-1 win

James Garner could probably make a big difference to Manchester United’s midfield right now, and in January there were calls for Ralf Rangnick to consider a recall.

United kept Garner at Nottingham Forest, and it’s probably for his own good. Being a part of this United side could actually have been detrimental to him.

Garner has continued to go from strength to strength at Forest during this season’s loan spell, and the 21-year-old was particularly impressive at the weekend.

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Garner shines in 4-1 win

Garner produced one of his most complete performances of the season at the weekend as Nottingham Forest won 4-1 away at Blackpool.

Playing as part of a midfield two, as opposed to the attacking role as he has at times this season, Garner showed different sides of his game.

Garner created three goalscoring chances in the victory, more than any Forest player, even though he did not score or assist.

He also showed quality on the defensive side of the ball, with five interceptions, the most on the pitch, and also made six ball recoveries.

Garner also had one shot on target, blocked one shot, and won two duels. WhoScored.com rated his performance a 7.84 out of 10 and Fotmob 7.9.

The Nottingham Post gave him a 8/10 rating, writing: “Neat and tidy in the centre of the pitch. Has really grown in the second half of this season, again looking so comfortable on the ball.”

Important moment to shine

Photo by Chris Ricco – The FA/The FA via Getty Images

This was a great moment for Garner to put in a big performance, a day after Bruno Fernandes had given him his seal of approval.

In a fan Q&A, Fernandes said James Garner was the Manchester United academy player he was most looking forward to playing alongside.

Garner has helped Forest into seventh place in the Championship, just one outside the play-off spots, but crucially they have three games in hand on sixth placed Blackburn and are just one point back.

Garner has three goals and four assists from midfield for Forest this season, with three of those assists coming in his last six games.

The 21-year-old is hitting form at a great time, with important games ahead, and could be heading for promotion in more ways than one.

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