Darikwa eyes Premier League return with Nottingham Forest

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By Sports Reporter

ZIMBABWE international defender Tendayi Darikwa has pledged to continue working hard to hold on to his Nottingham Forest place – and to help fire them further up the Championship table in the process following a run of impressive form in recent weeks.

The 26 year-old right back was in top form again on Saturday after providing the assists for both of Lewis Grabban’s goals in Nottingham Forest’s 2-0 win over Ipswich on Saturday.

“I am enjoying it. I want to be on the pitch playing football and helping the team to collect the best results possible,” said Darikwa.

“I am not going to rest on that or slow down. I am going to keep working hard and see where it takes me.

“I do want to start adding more of that (assists) to my game. It is something I have been working on in training, my delivery.”

The former Burnley man, who was born in Nottingham and raised a stone’s throw away from the club’s City Ground, says he is enjoying life under Aitor Karanka.

Karanka has given Darikwa and left back Jack Robinson the freedom to push forward and supply attacking width and he is enjoying the new role.

“It is important for me and Jack to try to set a tempo; to try to push on as much as we can, when we can.

“The front four are closely marked, which can create space for myself and the other full back.

“Thankfully, I managed to get a couple of assists. It has been a tough week. Playing three games in seven days is always difficult.”

The win lifted Forest to fifth in the Championship table, six points behind the leaders, Norwich and Darikwa hopes they continue aiming higher as they seek to end a 20 year Premier League exile.

“We need to keep moving in the direction that we are. We need to stay humble and there are a lot of points to play for.

“We have to enjoy it because we cannot use pressure as a negative. We have to see it as a positive. We want to be the players to bring success to Forest.

“We are fifth on the table but we want to be higher than that. It is not a bad position, but there is more to come from this group and I hope we can fulfil our potential.

“We will take it game by game, but we are playing good football at the minute and it is about being confident and about moving forward in the right direction.”

He added: “The ambition and desire here is huge. I do not need to talk about the history of the club, because we all know what was achieved in the past. I think this club has underachieved for a long time and hopefully we can be the group of players that finally takes it back to the Premier League.”