Now Watch Forest Go !
September 22, 2007
Nottingham Forest put on an emphatic display at the City Ground this afternoon, to demolish Gillingham 4-0. A Junior Agogo hatrick will grab the headlines, but the team performance as a whole was the real bonus for Colin Calderwood and the fans alike.
The Gills laid their cards on the table from the start, as they put 10 men behind the ball in an effort to frustrate and stifle the Reds. Forest passed the ball around at will, hardly being threatened, but also hardly having much success. The match stats for the first half would have made for an embarrassing read from a Gills perspective and probably made Forest look better than they were as Gillingham were in all honesty truly awful.
Forest were enterprising in their play and with 3 strikers up front, you felt it was only a matter of time before they scored. The Reds did manage to breach the Gills defence several times before the breakthrough came. Wilson forced keeper Stillie into a save on 16 mins and Tyson went close with a good header from close range. Tyson again came close soon after, when good work between Lennon and Holt saw the ball land at the strikers feet only for his goal bound shot to come back off the post.
The Reds had to wait until 2 mins before the break for the breakthrough. A free kick from just inside the Gills half found Holt out wide. He floated an enticing ball into the box where Agogo leapt above the Gills defence, seemingly unchallenged to head the ball home. Gillingham went in at the break 1-0 down, but must have thought it was their lucky day, as it could have been so much more. Possibly some of the best football played at the City Ground for a good while, had the fans happy at the interval and wanting more. Makes a change that as in recent times the first 45 mins was normally enough to make you want the final whistle, but it looks as though Calderwood has finally got the side playing the type of football the fans want to see.
The second half got underway with Gillingham pressing and about to have their first foray into the Reds half. It could have been dangerous as well, as Facey lost his marker but was unable to get a shot on goal. Luke Chambers had two chances in quick succession, but was denied by a line clearance from King and a Nicky Southall block. Tyson thought he'd scored with a great effort from just outside the box, but once again his shot hit the post. The rebound fell to Agogo, but his effort went high over the bar. Junior was soon to make amends for the miss, after getting on the end of a Sammy Clingan shot to head in his second. 2-0 to Forest and no less than they deserved for their dominance and silky display.
Agogo got his hatrick on 73 mins, thanks to fine work from partner in crime Tyson who showed his pace in taking on and getting passed Sodje, to put an excellent square ball into the box from the bye line for the simplest of tap ins for Junior.
Forest were by now home and dry. Gillingham were well beaten and could not gain possession of the ball, as Forest passed it around and began to look like the bookies title favourites they've failed to live up to before. Calderwood rang the changes, bringing on Sinclair for the hero Agogo who got a deserved standing ovation from the City Ground faithful. Commons came on for Lennon and at the death Perch replaced Chambers. Substitute Sinclair got his first goal for the club with his first touch of the ball. Just prior to going off, Chambers put a good ball into the box. Several Forest players had a poke at it, but it was Sinclair who slid in to put the ball over the line to make it 4-0 and party time for the fans.
This was a great showing from the lads today and what a refreshing change to make such a positive report. Things are looking good for the club at the moment. There's still along way to go of course and it was only the first home win of the season, but if this display is anything to go by, then Nottingham Forest do indeed mean business and are serious about promotion this time. Next week it's Yeovil and we all know what happened last time we met. The Reds will have to put on a similar show if they want anything out of that one. For the first time in a long time, I think they might do it.
Forest: Smith, Chambers (Perch 88), Morgan, Wilson, Bennett, Cohen, Lennon (Commons 85), Clingan, Agogo (Sinclair 82), Holt, Tyson.
Subs Not Used: Roberts, Breckin.
Goals: Agogo 43, 61, 73, Sinclair 84.
Gillingham: Stillie, Southall, Sodje, Cox, King, Brown (Dickson 64), Bentley (Nowland 40), Lomas, Crofts, Armstrong (Graham 53), Facey.
Subs Not Used: Clohessy, Cogan.
Ref: Eddie Ilderton (Tyne & Wear)