Huddersfield Town fans could be forgiven for casting a few despairing eyes at the fixture list ahead of this week’s trip to Nottingham Forest.

An away day at the City Ground is far from ideal for a team trying to snap a four match losing streak - especially given Dougie Freedman’s men are aiming to keep hold of their own recent run. In their case, it’s 13 matches unbeaten in the league stretching back to last November.

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History also favours the men in red, rather than blue and white. Forest have won five of their last six games with Town on home turf - although few will need reminding that it was Huddersfield celebrating last time out, when Sean Scannell scored the only goal of the game last April.

Similarly, Town have scored more than once in just one of the last 11 league matches with Forest, home and away, but that one exception also came as recently as last season. On that occasion, Joel Lynch, Nahki Wells and Grant Holt all found the back of the net as the Terriers won 3-0 on home turf.

Huddersfield Town (3) v Nottingham Forest (0) - Joel Lynch celebrates his first minute goal. SPORT FOOTBALL ENGLAND ACTION NOVEMBER 2014

Forest’s current unbeaten run is sure to leave many a Town supporter low on confidence heading into the weekend.

And yet.

There is also much cause for optimism that Town can dig out a result in the East Midlands and arrest their own recent slide.

Freedman has overseen a run that has elevated Forest to 10th in the Championship and just eight points off a coveted play-off spot. But of that 13 game run in the league, there have been more draws than wins - the points have been shared seven times compared with six victories.

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The key has been defence. Since the turn of the calendar year, Forest have scored more than one goal in a game just once, when a struggling Bolton were beaten 3-0. By contrast, there have been four clean sheets in six league matches since the New Year.

While it doesn’t promise a high-scoring affair, if Town can frustrate Forest’s attack, led by top scorer Nelson Oliveira, they will back themselves to extend a run of 14 games since they last failed to find the net.

Nottingham Forest v Reading at The City Ground Nelson Castro Oliveira celebrates his second goal

When it comes to the goals scored charts, Town have a far superior record. They’ve netted 40 league goals compared with Forest’s 31, but interestingly, they’ve taken far fewer shots on goal than their Midlands counterparts.

David Wagner’s strikeforce have taken 289 shots on goal, of which 129 have been on target, while Freedman’s have had 321 shots, of which 142 have hit the target, only to have nine fewer in the goals for column.

While goalkeeping undoubtedly plays a part, this far through the season the numbers suggest Town are simply making better use of their clear-cut opportunities.

Another factor could be Forest’s tendency to shoot from distance, with over half their efforts coming from outside the box, while their love of a long ball should keep Town’s back line busy in the air.

The fact that centre back Matt Mills is second in the club’s scoring stakes should be enough to warn Joel Lynch and Mark Hudson of a considerable threat from set pieces and to keep a close eye on tough tackling around the box.

Where Forest really do excel is in protecting the lead - they are yet to lose after scoring first so far this term.

It’s another note of caution for Town in their pursuit of their first win since Charlton were hammered 5-0 at the John Smith’s Stadium.

However, Wagner remains encouraged by performances, if not results, and only the most partisan Preston North End fan could argue last weekend’s final score was deserved on balance of play.

Defence remains key, and if Town can contain the opposition they will feel confident of finally emerging with the result they do deserve.