Nottingham Forest v Burnley: Cork may be ideal to stop Clarets’ misery

Burnley are hoping the return of England Under-21 international Jack Cork will provide them with a much-needed tonic following the heavy defeat to Leicester City at the weekend.

The Clarets are seven points adrift of the play-offs after losing their last three games, but have the advantage of a game in hand on those above them.

They have been boosted for the trip to promotion hopefuls Nottingham Forest by the return of midfielder Cork, who has been undergoing medical tests after he suffered heart palpitations while on Under-21 duty.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The on-loan Chelsea midfielder was badly missed in the recent defeats against Ipswich and Leicester, and could be key to Burnley’s hopes of promotion.

Manager Eddie Howe said in the wake of defeat to Leicester that it would require an ‘incredible run’ for the Clarets to make the play-offs, but at least the return of Cork has given assistant boss Jason Tindall cause for encouragement.

“It’s great to have him back,” said Tindall. “You are obviously going to miss a player of Jack’s quality.

“He’s a great lad with great ability so any team is going to miss that.

“Hopefully he will be available.”

Forest – at one time seen as favourites for an automatic promotion spot – are three points better off than Burnley but have not won since February.

Billy Davies is yet to suffer four consecutive defeats as manager of the club but after losing their last three, Forest are losing form at the wrong time.

A goal from Chris Iwelumo separated the two teams when they met on the opening day of the season at Turf Moor.