22/04/2006 Hartlepool
3 - 2

Simon Hough
Had to miss this game on Sat but enjoyed the delights of the Radio Nottingham commentary via Forest World for the first time in years. For games as big as this, it's much worse listening second hand than actually being there.

It sounded like a poor performance for the first hour but then things picked up and we were very unlucky not to score at least one more in the closing stages. Their keeper made 3 great saves in a couple of minutes then Tyson missed a one on one in injury time which he dragged wide.

Watched the goals last night. Our first goal came against the run of play. Clingan played a great chipped through ball for Tyson who lobbed the bouncing ball over the keeper to put us 1-0 up. Great finish but that injury time miss might cost us in the final table.

The defending for the first and third was very poor. The first came from non-existant marking from a corner, down to either Thompson or Breckin who failed to mark properly. Their player didn't do anything special and scored with a free header from 6 yeards.

The second goal was a freak. Short sideways free kick to their centreback who shoots from 25-30 yards out, deflected off Morgan, loops over Pedersen into the top corner. Normally you'd be happy for them to shoot from this distance and just one of those things that sometimes go against you.

The winner came from a passing move through the centre of our defence with Breckin and Morgan no where to be seen. Bennett almost saved the day but his last ditch block just fell back to the player who tapped in.

The second goal was even better than our first. Lester picked up the ball in midfield and played it forward to Tyson down the left channel. His pass back across the goal to Commons on the edge of the area was hit first-time into the bottom corner. Keeper left with no chance.

I was amazed when Perch replaced Thompson after we'd just scored but it's hard to tell without being there. Just seemed to send the wrond message when we were flooding forward for the equaliser.

Other than that, the last 30 minutes should give us a lift regardless of the result.

Looking forward to the Bournemouth game, we cannot afford to play either Perch or Thompson in midfield. They are too defensive and we have to do everything possible to improve our goal difference. Clingan in the middle with Gary Holt. I say this every week but Southall HAS to play on the right hand side to give the extra balance and goal threat.

Other possible changes are to play Gerrard instead of Pedersen as you've got to play your best team regardless of the previous results. Would be a little harsh on Pedersen but Gerrard is definitely the better keeper (both poor distribution though).

Lester instead of Grant Holt, who seemed to be targetted for special treatment by their players. Was in danger of a second yellow so had to be replaced. Would probably stick with Holt myself as Lester is useful for a last 20 minutes either as a forward or just behind.

Barnsley and Swansea are at home then away like ourselves which makes things more even. Especially with Southend losing and having to still play for promotion. They won't want to need a result on the last day to confirm their status for next season, especially as they're playing form team Bristol City who are still in with a small shout. Even Doncaster are capable of beating the potential champions on their big day so anything is possible.

The Bradford match will be like a home game with thousands of Forest fans there. Sounds like a 2 hour wait for those who went early on Sat morning to get them. It they make general sale on Sat, you'll have to get there very early to make sure.
Forest Man-of-the-Match:


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

No. Player Scored Cards
  THOMPSON  Substituted    
  GERRARD  Substitute (Not Used)    
COMMONS    1  
PERCH  Substitute (On for 18 )    
  LESTER  Substitute (On for 39 )    
16  CLINGAN  Substituted    
  SOUTHALL  Substitute (On for 40 )    
  CULLIP  Substitute (Not Used)    
TYSON    1  
10  HOLT  Substituted    
29  BENNETT