Five Star Forest Tear R's Apart
Queens Park Rangers were the latest team to be taken apart by Nottingham Forest last night at the City Ground. The 5-0 scoreline was a fair reflection of a game, that the Reds' dominated from the start.
Billy Davies made just one enforced change to the side that beat Reading previously, with James Perch replacing the suspended Nicky Shorey. Perch didn't let himself down in this fixture either and was a more than able deputy for the on loan defender. Earnshaw and Blackstock started upfront and as things transpired, they would prove to be a formidable partnership.
Forest soon settled into the game and from the from the first whistle, they passed the ball around well. This passing game of ours, is becoming something of a byword now and when done with the style and panache these players show, it's an absolute joy to watch.
The first goal came from a free kick, after Blackstock was brought down on the edge of the box. I fancied Majewski to take it, as he looked to be shaping up for a crack. The kick was fairly central and well placed for a shot on goal. Up stepped Earnshaw and he hit a wonderful shot, up and over the wall, to give Ikeme no chance in keeping it out.
Just 2 mins later, the Reds'would increase their lead and it was a goal so typical of how we play at the moment. Forest turned defence into attack, with Anderson picking the ball up in his own half and running down the wing. Within the blink of an eye, he was on the edge of the R's box and sent over a delightful ball that found Earnshaw in space. He ran onto the ball and from about 12 yards out, hit a powerful shot across goal and into the net.
QPR had lost a key player during the day in Routledge moving to Newcastle and whether this was a contributing factor to their current woes, is anyone's guess. Whilst it's unfair to take anything away from a great Forest victory, the R's were looking a little shell shocked to say the least.
Forest were to pile on even more misery for the visitors before the break, with former Rangers man Blackstock, bagging himself a penalty. Earnshaw was felled inside the box and it was a straightforward decision for the ref to give the spot kick. It was a little surprising to see Blackstock step up, especially with Little Earn, now on a hat trick. But due to two previous misses from the spot, it was Dex who was given the task of taking the kick. Blackstock struck the ball well and sent Ikeme the wrong way. 3-0 up and only half an hour gone.
As the first half drew to a close, the tempo of the game dropped a little and the visitors managed to come into the game a little more. Unfortunately for them, they didn't pose much of a threat, with only a couple of half chances that were defended with ease.
It's fair to say that us football fans are never satisfied and with us Forest supporters, that's certainly the case. There was a realisation at half time that a 6 goal victory would take us clear at the top of the League and ahead of the Geordies on goal difference. At 3-0 the points looked to be in the bag, but now there was something else to play for in the second half and boy, did they give it a go.
The visitors had a chance to pull one back just after the restart, with former Red Nigel Quashie forcing a good save from Camp. Any thoughts Rangers may have had about getting any joy from the game were short lived, as Forest replied by scoring the goal of the game. Another great move ended with Perch slotting a terrific throughball into the path of the onrushing Cohen. The revitalised midfielder hit an unstoppable shot from fully 25 yards out, that appeared to move several times in the air before finally beating Ikeme all ends up. What a goal. What a night.
The crowd were now baying for blood, as the chant '2 more goals and we're top of the League!' rang around the ground. Billy Davies did his best to oblige, by sending on Tyson and Adebola, for Anderson and Blackstock. Rangers then showed what a mess they truly are in, when they failed to take any of several chances they had to clear the ball away from their box. Three or four shots from inside the box weren't cleared, so Perch decided to help himself and slotted the ball into the net to put the Reds' 5 goals to the good.
One more goal and Forest would be clear at the top of the table, but as hard as they tried, it wasn't to be. The only downside to another fantastic display, was the possible injury to Wes Morgan. He limped off with a thigh strain, after overstretching in a tackle, some 15 mins before the end of the game. Hopefully he's fit for the weekend encounter with the Sheep, but it's touch and go whether he will or not. That possible bad news aside, this was an another awesome showing from the lads. The football this season is sublime and Billy Davies has us cooking on gas. These are heady days for us Forest fans, as we sit joint top of the table. Next up....it's a visit to the Sheepdip.
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