Date:Saturday August 16 2008
August 16, 2008
Forest arrived in Wales in confident mood following decent performances against Reading and Morecambe, but some dodgy refereeing decisions and a fine performance from the home side still leaves the Reds' looking for their first win of the season, following a 3-1 defeat at the Liberty Stadium.
Forest started the game with only one change from the side that did so well against Reading in the opening game of the season, with newbie Lee Martin replacing the injured Arron Davies. Both sides started brightly and the game was played at a high tempo. Swansea quickly took control though and put Smith on his guard right from the off. Forest were not without their chances and Earnshaw gave the home side a fright when almost putting the Reds' in front.
Swansea took the lead after only 7 mins, with a slightly fortuitous goal. Good work from Leon Britton saw his shot come back off the post and hit keeper Smith on the back and end up in the net. Forest went in search of a quick equaliser and nearly got it when Perch put Martin clean through. But his pass hit his target on the back of the heel to go away from him and end the attack.
The equaliser did come eventually on 35 mins, after some great wing play from Martin. He went at pace down the flank and put in a great cross on the run that was met by Perch of all people to poke in from close range. Although it was end to end play, it was probably the home side that ended the stronger and looked the more dangerous.
Loan signing Lee Martin looks like he's going to be a good addition and he needs to be signed up for longer than the reported 28 days that we have him for. He was instrumental in every attack today and caused the Swans defence all sorts of problems. So much so that Mathew Collins was replaced by Angel Rangel in an effort to shore up the home defence. Martin didn't have the same amount of luck against the substitute as he did with Collins.
The game continued to be an attacking and entertaining game. Swansea were probably proving to be more effective with their passing, but Forest at least tried to match them in this department. It is new to this particular Forest side after all. But it is coming together and the more they play, the better they will get at it.
Earnshaw who was predictably given a hard time by the Swansea faithful almost put us in front, but had his shot blocked by a defender. He was lively once again and worked hard for little reward. The most controversial incident of the game came about on 71 mins. Thomas Butler won himself an Oscar and his team a penalty, after referee Taylor adjudged he was poleaxed by two Forest defenders. Moussi and Chambers made no contact with the Swan, but his theatrics won the day. Smith initially saved the penalty from Bodde, but he managed to slot the rebound home to put the home side in front.
Calderwood made the necessary changes and brought on McLeary and Newbold. As Forest went in search of the equaliser, they were hit on the break. A great run by Gower saw him free of the Reds' defence. He sent over a perfect ball for Pintado, who hit the ball home with Smith having no chance.
Swansea were perhaps a little lucky to win 3-1, but should have nothing taken away from a great result. Forest equally should not be too downhearted. It was a hard result to take, but the improvements on last season are still there to see. It's a very long season and as the last one showed only too well. Luck has a funny way of evening itself out over the year. It wasn't our day today, but at least there will be others.
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Date:Saturday August 16 2008
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