Nottingham Forest manager Chris Hughton insisted he would not be over-hyping on-loan Manchester United teenager James
Garner after he scored his first goal in league football.
The Red Devils midfielder, who spent the first half of the season at Championship rivals Watford, netted from the edge of the penalty box before Colin Kazim-Richards’ late equaliser secured a point from a 1-1 draw for rivals Derby at Pride Park.
But Hughton is taking his guardianship of the Birkenhead-born 19-year-old seriously, saying: “He took a little while to get into the game because the middle of the pitch was a bit bobbly, but he grew into the match.
“He’s a very level-headed young man and our biggest responsibility now is not to build him up too much and give him a good education like he had at Watford during the first half of the season.”
Hughton added that his team should have put the game beyond the Rams prior to Kazim-Richards’ 84th-minute leveller, adding: “They were probably better than us in possession in the first half, but they didn’t really threaten our goal.
“We still needed to be better, though, and we were in the second half, but our biggest failing was not finishing the game off.
“It wasn’t as if we were hanging on – we got in some really good areas but didn’t get the second goal and then, the goal they got – which was a wonderful strike – can always happen after they went very direct with 10 minutes to go.
“The players are down and the timing of the goal makes it more disappointing.
“Two months ago, we would have been happy with a point away from home against a team in good form, so that sums up where we are at the moment because the disappointment isn’t just because it’s happened in a match against Derby.”
Home manager Wayne Rooney agreed that his side were fortunate to secure a point following their below-par, second-half performance.
He said: “They scored against the run of the play in the first half and we did in the second.
“I thought we were excellent for the first 30 minutes and were causing Forest problems, not in terms of the chances we were creating, but we were making them run and work and they did not know how to press us.
“Our heads dropped, though, after we conceded the goal. We were losing second balls and almost let Forest in three or four times ourselves.
“Every time we went forward we were also in the wrong positions and it wasn’t good enough or how I want to play and we need to understand that, when we do go behind, you can’t lose focus or get nervous.
“You’ve got to keep doing what you’re doing, so I’m pleased to come away with a point because it could have been a lot worse. But it was a great strike by Colin and I’ll credit the lads for staying in the game.”