FOREST 0 TOWN 1
A Sean Scannell strike late in the first half helped Town record a first win at the City Ground since 2000.
Town performed very well in Nottingham to record back-to-back wins after the victory over Ipswich on Easter Monday and could have won by more after a controlled performance on the road.
Sean Scannell’s fourth of the season settled the tie, but the likes of Butterfield, Gobern, Vaughan and late sub Miller could have netted too.
Both sides had chances in what was an open second half, but some excellent defending and good saves from Alex Smithies earned Town all three points.
Forest dominated possession early on and appealed for a penalty when Arsenal loanee Chuba Akpom went down in the area, but his appeals were rightly turned down by referee Darren Deadman.
It was Town who had the first real chance of the game. Butterfield whipped over a teasing a left-footed cross which was met by Vaughan, but he couldn’t get his header on target.
Forest used in-form Michail Antonio as their main outlet, but he struggled to get the better of Tommy Smith all game.
Town did continue to test the Forest ‘keeper, albeit from long range. The best effort came from Jacob Butterfield, but was met down low by Darlow.
Forest began to create half-chances. Mancienne fired an effort over from the edge of the area before Akpom had a good chance to take the lead; he drove towards the Town goal but scuffed his shot harmlessly wide.
Town could have gone ahead midway through the first-half through Oscar Gobern. The ball was played to Nahki Wells after a swift break away and he picked out the midfielder, but his shot was easily saved from ten yards out.
Burke was the main threat for the home side and he was next to try his luck, drifting past Conor Coady before having his shot well saved by Alex Smithies.
Town continued to look good on the break and took the lead through Sean Scannell in the 43rd minute. Jacob Butterfield played a beautiful ball through the Forest defence to meet the run of Scannell; he controlled the ball in the area and lifted it over the leg of ‘keeper Karl Darlow to give Town the lead.
Forest began the second half brighter, with Burke the main threat down the right. He cut in from the flank twice within five minutes but both his curling efforts went wide.
After what was a relatively a quite start to the second half, Forest had their best chances of the game inside two minutes. Forest substitute Tyler Walker drew a magnificent save from Alex Smithies before Forest had the ball in the net; Lansbury had a shot blocked from the edge of the area and the rebound fell to Walker just in front of goal. He played it past Smithies to Akpom who tapped in from close range, only for an offside flag to come from the linesman.
The game opened up and Town created more chances. Vaughan attempted a scissor kick which fizzed wide just before the striker’s hit from 20 yards out was well saved.
In the last five minutes, Mancienne had a golden opportunity to pull Forest level. He was unmarked when he met Burke’s corner but Alex Smithies expertly tipped the ball over the bar.
In the dying minutes of the game, Miller had the chance to double Town’s lead. Oscar Gobern took the ball into the area and picked out Miller, who fired just wide from close range.
Town’s team (3-5-2):
Alex Smithies; Joel Lynch, Mark Hudson (c), Tommy Smith; Reece James, Jacob Butterfield (Murray Wallace 90+3’), Oscar Gobern, Conor Coady, Sean Scannell; James Vaughan (Ishmael Miller 88’), Nahki Wells (Jonathan Hogg 78’).
Joe Murphy, David Edgar, Joe Lolley, Jake Carroll