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James Crawley

James Crawley writes

Posted Tuesday, October 19th 2021

📝 Report: Bristol City 1-2 Nottingham Forest

Two injury-time goals from Nottingham Forest substitute Lyle Taylor denied City what promised to be their first home win of the season.

Alex Scott scored his first club goal to put the Robins ahead at half-time but Taylor dispatched from the penalty spot just as four minutes of added time were announced.

The points looked to be shared but there was still time for the visitors to throw themselves forward again, and Taylor found himself in the right place at the right time as he put the ball over the line at the far post.

It was the cruellest of endings in a match where City had been largely positive and looked to have bounced back from disappointment just days earlier, however sport can be nasty and so it proved at a rain-soaked Ashton Gate where the wait for a first home win of the season continues.

The background

Nigel Pearson made four changes from the team that started against AFC Bournemouth three days earlier. Rob Atkinson has recovered from illness while Jay Dasilva, Alex Scott and Nahki Wells also replaced Callum O’Dowda, Cam Pring and the injured pair Andy King and Joe Williams.

City were looking to bounce back from that defeat to The Cherries at the weekend. It was a result which hit the team hard, more so for the overall performance and a big display was needed in this Tuesday night encounter.

What happened

Pearson called for his players to be tidier in possession and they were certainly that in a bright start under the BS3 lights. In particular, Jay Dasilva and Scott were effective going forward with the ball like magnets to their feet, however one individual error almost led to a goal for The Reds.

It was Atkinson who lost possession in the middle of the park. He had brought the ball forward in his typical style but a skewed pass saw the defender lose out before Forest pumped the ball forward to Brennan Johnson. Unfortunately for him, Tomas Kalas charged back to close him down and put Johnson off, whose ultimately weak shot was held easily by Dan Bentley.

City started growing into the game after the opening 15 minutes, Andreas Weimann had a free header from six yards out but he couldn’t direct it past Brice Samba and it was caught comfortably.

Scott then went agonisingly close to opening the scores. Weimann worked the ball to Wells inside the area who was tackled quickly but the ball rebounded for Weimann.  There was little time for the Austrian forward to think as he poked the ball into the path of Scott who could only stab the ball wide from close range.

With 20 minutes played, this had been an exciting Robins performance with more flair and bite but without the breakthrough before Forest grew into the game.

Philip Zinckernagel blazed over and just past the half-hour mark, the Robins had the post to thank as Johnson once again found himself in on goal, this time his shot beat Bentley but hit the upright. 

Nathan Baker was well placed to head away a dangerous cross when Johnson rounded Bentley at a tight angle, however City survived the scare before Scott taped home as the first half neared its end.

Chris Martin won the initial flick-on which Wells chased down, his low shot was palmed into the path of Scott by Samba and City’s Young Lion made no mistake.

The visitors were quickest out of the blocks after half time and in the 51st minute, Lewis Grabban had the ball in the back of the net. However, Forest’s top scorer was judged to be offside by the assistant referee.

At the other end, Scott saw his appeals for a penalty dismissed, before Wells tried his luck from very long range but his looping shot rippled the top of the net.

With 20 minutes remaining Wells went even closer! This time the striker kept himself composed as he looked for both power and placement with a shot which Bamba appeared to tip on to the post and behind for a corner, however the officials indicated a goal kick.

As the rain poured The Reds offered little in response as City looked set to see the game. Unfortunately, Steve Cooper’s side had other ideas with the head coach replacing Grabban with Taylor towards the end.

And he certainly did his manager’s decision justice, converting from 12 yards after Nathan Baker committed a foul, and moments later he got on the end of a Bentley save, converting the rebound inside the 92nd minute to steal the points at the death.

Additional reporting: Charlie Biggs-Thomas

The team

City: Bentley, Tanner, Kalas, Baker, Atkinson, Dasilva, James, Scott (Palmer 77), Weimann, Wells (O’Dowda 83), Martin (Massengo, 67). Subs: O'Leary, Simpson, Bakinson, Pring.

Up next

City return to action when they travel to face West Brom on Saturday (October 23rd, 3pm).

🎥Post-match reaction

 

📸 Match Action

📊 Bristol City in numbers

  • Possession: 34.1%
  • Shots: 9
  • Passes: 279
  • Pass success rate: 66%
  • Tackles: 19
  • Clearances: 22
  • Interceptions: 22
  • Aerial duels won: 21
  • Best Opta rating: Nathan Baker 7.56

ON THE BALL

  • Most passes: Dan Bentley 37
  • Best pass accuracy: George Tanner 92.9%
  • Most touches: Baker 59

DEFENSIVE DUTIES

  • Most tackles: Matty James, Tanner 6
  • Most interceptions: Baker 6
  • Most clearances: Baker 7

City are back in action on Saturday when they travel to take on West Bromwich Albion at The Hawthorns (October 23rd, 3pm).

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