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Big Match Preview: Nottingham Forest

Bristol City host Nottingham Forest at Ashton Gate today, as they bid to keep their unbeaten festive season on track.

It's their final league game before hosting Manchester United in midweek.

The Robins sit third in the Sky Bet Championship, with today's visitors occupying 11th.

FACTFILE

Formed:1865
Nickname: Reds, Forest, Tricky Trees
Website: www.nottinghamforest.co.uk
Twitter: @NFFC
Ground: City Ground
Capacity: 30,445

Honours:
First Division winners (Prem) – 1977/78
Second Division winners (Champ) – 1906/07, 1921/22, 1997/98
Third Division winners (L1)  – 1950/51
FA Cup winners – 1897/98, 1958/59
League Cup winners – 1977/78, 1978/79, 1988/89, 1989/90
European Cup (Champions League) – 1978/79, 1979/80).
UEFA Super Cup winner: 1979
Charity Shield winner: 1978

Last season:

Championship: 21st
FA Cup: 3rd round, lost to Wigan Athletic
EFL Cup:  3rd round, lost to Arsenal
Top scorer:  Britt Assombalonga - 14
Average attendance:  22,169

HOW DID THEY GET HERE?

Forest have essentially done it all in their 152-year history. They’ve won England’s highest division (although not since it was reformed as the Premier League), the Champions League, the FA Cup and the League Cup.

They even set an unbeaten record of 42 games across two seasons in the 1970s, until Arsenal surpassed this run by going 49 matches without defeat between May 2003 and October 2004.

They have spent four years in the Premier League since its inception in 1992, with a third-place finish their highest rank in 1995.

Since then they have flaunted in League One and the Championship but while they have not added to their trophy cabinet in recent years, they have been keeping pace with the play-off contenders in England’s second tier this season.

Mark Warburton

MEET THE GAFFER - MARK WARBURTON

Cruciate ligament injuries put an end to Warburton’s playing career which began in the youth set up at Leicester City.

The London-born former defender took on coaching roles in the Watford academy setup in the mid-2000s before he joined Brentford as a first team coach.

He eventually got his chance as manager in December 2013 and led the Bees back into the Championship.

He signed for Rangers in 2015, leading the Gers to a league and cup double, gaining promotion to the Scottish Premiership.

He took over as Forest boss in March of this year and managed to steer his club out of the relegation zone.

Daryl Murphy

STAR MAN - DARYL MURPHY

The former Ipswich Town striker is closing in on 100 career league goals. He’s already netted nine times for Forest this season, taking him to within four goals of triple figures.

The 34-year-old forward spent time at Sunderland and Sheffield Wednesday as well as Celtic, before helping Newcastle return to the Premier League last season.

But he arguably enjoyed his finest spell during his five years at Portman Road between 2011 and 2016, where he scored 61 goals for Ipswich Town.

Will Jamie Paterson be the City hero against his former side again?

MEMORABLE FIXTURE - BRISTOL CITY 2-1 FOREST

Saturday, October 1 2016

Goals:
City: Tammy Abraham 65, Jamie Paterson 68.
Forest: Apostolos Vellios 33’

City came from behind to beat Forest the last time these two teams played each other at Ashton Gate in what was game to remember for Jamie Paterson.
Apostolos Vellios opened the scoring before Chelsea loanee Abraham equalised with his 11th goal of the campaign. City went ahead just three minutes later when Paterson struck against his former club and in front of the away supporters.

The narrow win extended City’s unbeaten home run against Forest to four games.

AND FINALLY...

Officials
Referee: James Linnington
Lee Venamore and Timothy Wood
Fourth Official: Robert Lewis

Betting (via SkyBet)
City 5/6
Draw 11/4
Nottingham Forest 29/10