13/10/1999 Sheffield Wednesday
4 - 1

For 35 minutes tonight, Forest more than matched their Premiership opponents, but they merely flattered to deceive. Plenty of slick passing and good movement held the promise of good things to come, although Forest did look a little short of presence and ideas at the front. The Reds could have taken the lead though after only 3 minutes. An excellent ball from Prutton found Alan Rogers who played a high ball into the box. Srnicek comically flapped at the ball, missed, and watched helplessly as it dropped into a crowd of players. Unfortunately for the Reds it fell to Andy Hinchcliffe who volleyed it against the keepers legs and saw it cannon away to safety.
More attempts on the Wednesday goal followed but these were mainly long range efforts as yet again Forest struggled to find the killer pass. On the occasions when Wednesday did trouble Forest, the warning signs were there for all to see as time and again they won the aerial battles. Crossley pulled off a tremendous double save to deny firstly Rudi and then Cresswell after 23 minutes as a static Reds defence just watched.
With the half well into stoppage time, Sheffield went ahead. A free kick was crossed high into the back post and once more Booth won the header with ease and knocked the ball back across the box. Cresswell arrived, easily won the high ball and nodded it over Norm and into the net. An awful time to concede a goal but Forest at this stage looked well capable of fighting their way back into the game. However, it was a very different Reds side who appeared for the second half. All the belief seemed to have been left in the dressing room as they appeared to do nothing more than go through the motions. It was painful to watch. No-one seemed to want to try. Surprisingly, it took Wednesday 15 minutes to add to the score line, and this has to go down as the worst goal Forest have conceded for a very long time. Cresswell, out on the touchline and looking no threat at all, somehow rode through 6 attempted tackles and set up Booth, who hit the ball home.
After 70 minutes it was three - but what a strike it was! A harmless looking cross from Alexanderson was met on the volley by Sonner and the ball fairly flew past Crossley. No keeper around would have got anywhere near it. It now seemed only a matter of how many Wednesday would score, indeed plenty of Reds fans had seen enough and were already heading for the nearest pub. Platt made a couple of changes, bringing on Harewood and Louis-Jean, but it made little difference.
It became 4-0 after 82 minutes when Rudi scored and Forest hit back with a late consolation goal from Freedman after 84. A great ball from Scimeca found the feet of Dougie and he chipped the ball over the advancing Srnicek. The second half performance by Forest was as poor as I have seen for many a game. I can accept being beaten by far superior opponents ( which Wednesday were most definitely not ) but when the side just rolls over and dies the way they did here, it leaves a very sour taste in my mouth. They are better than this.
Forest Man-of-the-Match: Mark Crossley


[Click on Player Name to view Player Profile and Statistics]

No. Player Scored Cards
SCIMECA  Substituted    
40  PRUTTON       
  MERINO  Substituted    
  FREEDMAN    1  
11  HAREWOOD  Substitute (On for 9 )    
LOUIS-JEAN  Substitute (On for 7 )    


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