Forest Hit Cruise Control
April 5, 2008
Forest ran out deserved and comfortable 3-1 winners at the City Ground this afternoon, in front of just under 20,000 fans. Goals from Junior Agogo (2) and Luke Chambers sealed the points.
New boy Garath McCleary was given his first start for the Reds and he didn't disappoint. He should be delighted with his showing, as should the young and diminutive Mark Byrne who replaced him for the last 30mins.
Wilson could have given Forest the lead as early as the 4th min, when he let rip with a 35 yard thunderbolt that Higgs did well to tip over the bar. Ormerod went close with a shot, that Higgs once again did well to save. Although it was a scrappy game at times, there was plenty of chances to get the fans on their feet.
With their one and only attack of the half, the Robins took the lead. It came from huge kick by Higgs that caught the Reds defence asleep. The ball beat both Wilson and Morgan and Gillespie was the first to react and chased ahead of his supposed markers. He hit the ball passed Smith and it went in off the post. It was as much of a surprise to the visitors, as it was to the home side that they had taken the lead. It was the first time in 4 meetings that they had put one past us. The equaliser though, wasn't long in coming.
Clingan put a great ball into the box, that picked out Agogo on the 6 yard line. He controlled the ball well with his chest and hit the sweetest half volley on the turn and passed the keeper and into the net. Clingan could have added to the score, but Higgs was once again alert to save his 20 yard drive.
Bennett worryingly went off after feeling the affects of a challenge. After receiving treatment, he briefly continued, but was replaced by Commons. Cohen strangely moved to the left back spot and didn't let himself down at all, but it did cause a few strange looks in the crowd when the move was first made.
Forest took the lead just before the break. McCleary thought he had scored, but his header came off the bar. Chambers was well placed to side foot it into the net and send the Reds in a deserved 2-1 up.
Results elsewhere were not looking too bad at the interval and there was even idle chatter amongst the fans about still being in with a chance of automatic. At the end of the day those idle words would prove to be just that. But we can dream.
That man Gillespie almost levelled the scores after the restart. He sent a hopeful shot onto the bar. It looked as though Smith thought it was going well over, because he seemed to leave it. Luckily it rattled the woodwork and the score remained the same.
Shortly after Agogo got the goal of the game. He managed to turn his marker and went on the run. From just outside the box and at an angle to the goal, he let off a curling shot that Higgs looked to have saved. But the shot was too strong and hit the back of the net to seal victory for the Reds.
Forest played well today, despite some scrappy play at times. Without wanting to be unkind to the Robins, they were no great shakes. But they had to be beaten and they were beaten well. We may have left it too late for automatic promotion, but it will give the players and the fans some confidence to go into the playoffs in some sort of form. That's something that's been missing all season if truth be told. But now is as good a time as any to hit it. Next up it's Brizzle Rovers on Tuesday night and for the first time this season, we have the chance to go three games unbeaten. All good runs start somewhere. Let's hope this is where ours starts and we once and for all get out of this Godforesaken division.