Awoniyi makes first Premier League start in Nottingham Forest's clash with West Ham United

Taiwo Awoniyi Nottingham Forest 2022-23Getty Images

Taiwo Awoniyi will make his first Premier League start for Nottingham Forest in their clash with West Ham United on Sunday.

The 25-year-old has been named in Steve Cooper’s starting XI for the match against David Moyes’ Hammers.

Awoniyi will start in a three-man attack alongside Jesse Lingard and Brennan Johnson while he will be relying on service from Neco Williams, Lewis O'Brien, Orel Mangala, and Harry Toffolo.

Former France youth international of Senegalese descent Moussa Niakhate also made the line-up, however, he will hold sway in the defence alongside Joe Worrall and Scott McKenna.

Meanwhile, newly acquired Cheikhou Kouyate (Senegal) and Emmanuel Dennis were left out of the game against the Londoners.

Awoniyi was handed his English top-flight bow in the 2-0 defeat to Newcastle United. In that low-scoring affair played at St. James' Park, the Nigeria international was introduced for Sam Surridge after 63 minutes.

For his contribution, he accounted for zero shots, zero passes, eight touches, four passes and a passing accuracy of 75 per cent.

After impressing for Union Berlin in the 2021-22 campaign, the African completed his move to the promoted Premier League side after penning a five-year contract.

He also revealed his readiness to get going at Nottingham Forest, adding his main focus will be to score goals and fight for every challenge.

“When I look at Forest and look at the history of the club, it’s even more about the team. This is the kind of place I love to belong to and I am ready for it,” he told the club website.

“Every striker wants to score goals, but I’m ready to work for the team, to fight for every ball, to win every challenge, that’s my style and that's what I'm here for.

 “My dream is to always keep working and I see him as a person who I can develop under. For me, it's always about hard work, dedication, and believing in God. When I look back at the games with Union Berlin, it was always about the team for me.”

On the other side, Algeria's Said Benrahma made West Ham’s starting XI with Cote d’Ivoire’s Maxwel Cornet named among the substitutes.

Awoniyi makes first PL start for Forest

Will Awoniyi score against West Ham United?