15/12/1999 Fulham
0 - 0

I left The City Ground tonight with a feeling of optimism after a much improved display by Forest against a strong Fulham side. Some of the eternal pessimists out there will no doubt say that Fulham were below par, but having only just beaten a strong Spurs side, they would have certainly expected to leave Nottingham with all three points and must be extremely grateful not to have been beaten out of sight. Make no mistake, Forest played them off the park. Stern John once again demonstrated what a shrewd buy he is doing everything but score. The only person getting more woodwork than John at this moment in time is Joseph of Nazareth!!!!! Whilst Stern will undoubtedly grab the headlines after seeing not one , but two efforts rebounding off the woodwork, almost everything that was good about Forest tonight was instigated by David Prutton, who had another outstanding evening.
The Reds totally dominated the first half but all of their good work was let down by the lack of a killer pass. Forest had a good chance to take the lead after only 7 minutes. Brennan caught the Fulham defence napping with a quickly taken free kick that Freedman connected with at the near post but his effort was well turned around the post by Taylor for a Forest corner.
On 25 minutes the Reds forced their sixth corner of the evening. Gray took the kick and it was met on the volley by Scimeca but sailed just wide. 4 minutes later and another chance to go ahead. This time another dangerous cross from the vastly improved Gray found John who lunged the ball through to Freedman. It was a good chance but Dougie managed to screw the ball narrowly wide, much to the amusement of the Fulham fans.
Forest started the second half in much the same manner and came close to taking the lead after 55 minutes. Freedman collected the ball after Prutton had once more carved his way through the Fulham defence. After holding the ball up well, Freedman turned and slipped the ball across to John who looked certain to score but his low shot thudded against the foot of the upright and rebounded to safety.
Freedman was replaced by Marlon Harewood after 70 minutes and he immediately started to do the things that Freedman doesn't - like challenging defenders and putting goalkeepers under pressure - and it was Marlon who carved open the Fulham defence to create the second chance of the night for Stern. Marlon had Brennan on his outside screaming for the ball but chose instead to drive past two defenders and reach the dead ball line before pulling the ball back into the area. How this ball stayed out I will never know. John smashed it first time past Taylor only to see it batter the underside of the bar before bouncing down behind Taylor, completely avoiding any contact with the stunned keeper before being cleared by a very relieved defender. So the much deserved victory wasn't to be, but if Forest continue to perform with the same passion and endeavour in future matches, the wins will surely come. Lets start with Crewe!!
Forest Man-of-the-Match: David Prutton


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

No. Player Scored Cards
40  PRUTTON       
  FREEDMAN  Substituted    
11  HAREWOOD  Substitute (On for 10 )    


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