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Sports News of Sunday, 15 October 2023


Awoniyi deserves to be first choice – Nottingham Forest star speaks on rivalry with Super Eagles striker

Taiwo Awoniyi Taiwo Awoniyi

Nottingham Forest striker Chris Wood has stated that Super Eagles star Taiwo Awoniyi deserves to be the first-choice striker at the club, Soccernet reports.

After a fantastic two-year stay at Union Berlin, Nottingham Forest signed Awoniyi last summer in a deal worth €20.5million.

The Super Eagles striker had a good start, scoring on his debut for the club. However, he suffered a lull weeks into the season. Also, injuries did not help, as he missed about three months due to a niggling injury.

Nonetheless, the Super Eagles striker recovered and proved his ability, scoring in Nottingham Forest’s last five games of the season to help them survive relegation.

Awoniy’s exploits last season ensured that he solidified his spot as Nottingham Forest’s number.

The Tricky Trees signed former Burnley talisman Chris Wood in the summer, but it was always clear that Awoniyi was number one. The 26-year-old Nigerian striker still proved his prowess this season, scoring in Forest’s first three games.

New Zealand striker Wood has had to play second fiddle, starting just one game for Forest this season. Still, Wood insists that he and Awoniyi have a good relationship.

“From a personal perspective, I’d love to be getting more minutes, but I’ll just keep working hard to get myself back in that team,” Wood said per Nottingham Post.

“T (Awoniyi) has had the shirt recently and deservedly so because he’s playing really well, so I’ll keep trying to push him hard in training and help him raise his level even higher.”

“I’d like to think he feels the same with me. There’s no bad feeling about who starts and who comes on — we all respect the manager’s decision and want to see each other do well.”

Awoniyi is currently injured, so that would give Wood some extra minutes. Nonetheless, Steve Cooper has constantly reiterated his belief in Awoniyi, and once he recovers, he will be back in the starting eleven.