James Garner’s outstanding performances for Nottingham Forest are becoming routine. That doesn’t mean they should go without praise.
While Garner’s run of two goals in two consecutive games came to an end at the weekend, the Manchester United loanee put in one of his best all round displays as Nottingham Forest drew 0-0 away at Bristol City.
Garner, 20, created more chances than any player on the pitch (4) in the stalemate. His four key passes was the same as Bristol City’s entire team managed.
It was a by-product of his 82 touch performance. Garner touched the ball more times than any player on display.
An all-action performance saw Garner help limit Bristol City’s attack, managing five tackles in total. Again, this was the highest total of any player on the pitch.
The United youngster also chipped in with one interception, two clearances, one shot, and two aerial duels won.
The Nottingham Post rated his performance 8/10, writing: “He’s just a class above, isn’t he? Ran the midfield and pulled some delightful passes out the bag.”
More speculation over his future
There was more speculation over Garner’s future this weekend, as you might expect. He will be a sought-after player this summer.
The Sun report Garner will be offered a contract extension at United, and could be sent out on loan abroad, or to another team in England.
A contract extension makes sense, United did the same with Dean Henderson last summer after a successful loan.
As it stands, Garner is under contract until 2023, so now is the ideal time to extend it further and match it up with Scott McTominay’s deal, which runs through until 2026.
An extra loan is not so cut and dry. There is a fair chance United decide to integrate Garner in with the first team next season.
This will depend on his performance in pre-season, and United’s summer transfer business, where a decision on Paul Pogba’s future will influence midfield plans.
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