O'Driscoll Serves Up Footballing Masterclass
The feel good factor and all round good vibe surrounding all things Nottingham Forest continues to grow, under the new ownership of the club and the very attractive, easy on the eye football being served up by manager Sean O`Driscoll.
Charlton Athletic arrived at the City Ground yesterday as one of my tips to do well this season, but by the time the final whistle blew, they will have known they were well beaten and at times played off the park by a Forest side that looked very comfortable on the ball in every department.
The first half ended with the Reds` deservedly 1-0 in front, thanks to a rather fortuitous goal from a Lewis McGugan free kick. The Addicks barely got a look in during the first 45 minutes and keeper Camp was rarely troubled. For all the dominance and possession, there were few real chances on goal for the home side either, but a clever shot from Adlene Guedioura shaved the cross bar and was unlucky not to go in.
Charlton came out for the second half offering a little more threat and played with more purpose than they did in the first. Camp was called into action for the first time in the game, when he had to look lively and saved well from a Jordan Cook effort from outside the box. That showed that for all their possession and attractive football, a 1-0 lead was not going to be enough for the Reds`.
Forest got their much needed and deserved second through some great work from Chelsea`s on loan defender Sam Hutchinson. He danced his way into the penalty area and slotted the ball under Hamer, with all the coolness and aplomb of a seasoned striker.
The visitors soon pulled a goal back and made for a rather tense and nervy finish to the game. Ricardo Fuller was allowed far too much time and space in the box, as he headed the ball passed a struggling Lee Camp to make it 2-1. The game may have been won, but referee Mr. Salisbury was threatening to ruin things with some over officious decision making and the reckless issuing of yellow cards.
This win was more emphatic than the scoreline suggests. Forest totally outplayed Charlton for large parts of the game and should have won by a greater margin. Sean O`Driscoll may argue that this is still a work in progress and you`d struggle to disagree with him. It is still early days, but the early signs are good. If things continue as they are, then this could prove to be a very interesting season indeed. The chant of "He`s Sean O`Driscoll, he plays on the floor," will have been well received by the manager. These are good times to be a Forest fan, it`s such a shame that only 19,745 were there to enjoy it.
Nottingham Forest: Camp; Hutchinson, Halford, Collins, Ayala; Guedioura, Gillett, McGugan (Moussi 83), Reid (Coppinger 84); Cox (Sharp 80), Blackstock.
Subs (not used): Evtimov, Harding, Moloney, Majewski.
Goals:McGugan 17, Hutchinson 75
Booked:Guedioura 55 (foul on Hollands), Cox 65 (foul on Hamer), Blackstock 90 (foul on Kerkar)
Charlton:Hamer; Solly, Wiggins, Morrison, Cort; Jackson, Pritchard, Hollands (Kerkar), Cook (Haynes 59); Wright-Phillips (Fuller 81), Kermorgant.
Subs (not used):Button, Wilson, Dervite, Green.
Goals:Camp og 87
Booked: Jackson 67 (foul on Halford), Morrison 76 (dissent), Kermorgant 89 (dissent)