MAN OF THE MATCH
MATCH REPORT: JUST A SMALL TOWN IN DORSET
Nottingham Forest, European Champions, FA Cup winners and League title winners, an enviable list of honours that any team would be proud of. But only Forest fans with long memories will have anything to remember. The weight of expectation may hang heavy at the City Ground, but it doesn’t matter who you play you still have to beat them to win.
And, this is exactly what the ‘better’ team failed to do on their home patch against a team who’s only major honour was winning a League title back in 1987. Football can be a great leveller and getting a result against the so-called ‘bigger’ teams always adds a little extra joy to a game.
A concise match report would state that Notts Forest were the better team in the first half, AFC Bournemouth in the second. Both teams scored a goal when they were on top.
The now well-read Nottingham Post match preview was all that Eddie Howe would have needed to inspire his team. Our favourite line “A famous stadium where the biggest names in world football once plied their trade.” Exactly, where the great teams ONCE plied their trade. The preview was obviously a wind-up, but one that proved to be a bit presumptuous, bit I’m sure they got plenty of extra hits on their site. Cheap but effective.
The home side started with more intent and created a host of chances but only managed to get four of them on target throughout the whole game, all in the first half. The Cherries were sluggish and having another one of those ‘slow starts’. But with all the chances Forest created they rarely threatened the scoreline. The Forest team were having trouble with the offside rule, as was the linesman. Cox was well offside, but no flag and luckily no goal.
With less of the play the visitors still managed to create a few chances and a couple of very good chances. Lewis Grabban came closest when he looked like he had found the net from close range, however, the post got in the way and ball was ushered away to safety.
The second half was a different affair, with the Cherries pressing, harassing and generally getting much more of the ball. The home side seem to decide that they had done enough to win the game and started to play like Bournemouth in the first half. They had one gilt-edged chance, with Bournemouth looking for an offside flag that never came, no surprise there, Henderson (i think) rounded Allsop and managed to put his shot wide of an open goal. Again the home side had the ball in the net, but Ward (i think) was being used as a lifting device and dragged to the ground. Right decision from the ref.
It was a long time coming, but it was well worth the wait, and once again proved that teams should write us off at their peril. With 91 minutes on the clock the ball dropped to Pugh on the edge of the box who squeezed his shot between the keeper and the post. Cue wild celebrations from us and head in hands for them.
I particularly enjoyed Billy Davis in the post match interview, laughing that he couldn’t believe that they didn’t win. Well, a second half with no shots on target, might help you decipher why you didn’t win Billy.
If AFC Bournemouth had created as many chances as Forest, we would probably be saying we deserved to win. In our opinion a draw was a fair result. But, as we all know, if you don’t put away your chances then you don’t deserve to win. Goals are what count not chances. And, it doesn’t matter when you score a goal, they all count, just leaving it late adds to the excitement.
We now have the pleasure of big time Charlies Nottingham Forest coming to our humble little ground in the last home game of the 2013/14 season. Hope they don’t get lost trying to find the ground.
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