Nottingham Forest 3-2 Bolton Wanderers

  • December 09, 2017 | By Chris Mann
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Bolton's wretched record continues, as a 3-2 defeat at Nottingham Forest extended their winless Championship away run to 36 games.

Wanderers got off to the worst possible start at the City Ground, as a slip from Antonee Robinson was punished by Barrie McKay.

Will Buckley headed the visitors level on the stroke of half-time but they failed to build on that after the restart, with wasteful finishing costing them dear when Joe Worrall put the home side back in front on the hour.

Substitute Ben Brereton looked to have sealed victory for Forest in the final minute of normal time and although a stoppage-time own-goal from Worrall made things interesting again from a Bolton point-of-view, they couldn't find that elusive equaliser.

With last weekend's 3-1 victory over Barnsley still fresh in the memory, Phil Parkinson decided to stick with the same team - with Reece Burke retaining his place ahead of David Wheater in defence, while Adam Le Fondre was left out completely.

Wanderers, beaten heavily in each of their last three trips to the City Ground, got off to the worst possible start, trailing inside three minutes as a cross from Tyler Walker was turned home past a helpless Ben Alnwick by McKay.

Eric Lichaj came close to doubling Forest's advantage with just nine minutes played, firing into the side-netting with Alnwick seemingly beaten, while Bolton's first attack, shortly before the half-hour, ended with Sammy Ameobi seeing a goalbound effort charged down by former Trotters defender Matt Mills.

Walker, provider of the opening goal, continued to torment Robinson down the Forest right, with the Wanderers defender finding himself in the referee's book for a lunging challenge on 32 minutes.

Ameobi, who had earlier seen an effort blocked, tried his luck once more as the half began to draw to a close, although this time his strike was high and wide of the target, but the visitors were level before the break as they picked the perfect to time to equalise.

A looping cross from Josh Vela picked out an unmarked Buckley in the centre of the box, who threw himself at the ball to head past Jordan Smith and ensure the sides went in all-square at the break.

There were no changes to either side as the players arrived back on the field for the start of the second period, which began with Gary Madine, on his 100th appearance for Bolton, heading wide after rising highest to meet a cross from Vela.

Vela then took aim at goal himself, latching on to neat play involving both Sammy Ameobi and Mark Little, before seeing his eventual effort blocked by Worrall.

The Wanderers academy graduate was at the heart of the action again moments later, heading narrowly over the crossbar from a Little cross, but the ball was in the net at the other end on the hour as Worrall, the hero at the other end moments earlier, lashed home from the edge of the box to score his first Forest goal.

Parkinson looked to inject from fresh impetus into his side as the half progressed, introducing both Adam Armstrong and Craig Noone in place of Buckley and Darren Pratley, but it was the hosts who continued to look the more likely scorers.

The game should have been put beyond doubt when Tyler Walker raced clear on 80 minutes, only to shoot over the top of Alnwick's goal, but Forest did make it 3-1 in the final minute of normal time as Brereton, on as a substitute, got in behind the Bolton defence before firing through Alnwick's legs.

Aaron Wilbraham, himself on as a substitute for Wanderers, saw a strike deflect past Smith in stoppage time, an effort which was later credited as a Worrall own-goal, but it wasn't enough to salvage a point as the Trotters were ultimately beaten 3-2.

Parkinson's side return to action next Saturday, when they face Burton Albion in a relegation six-pointer at Macron Stadium.

Nottingham Forest: Smith, Mancienne, Worrall, Mills, Lichaj, Bridcutt, Osborn (Bouchalakis 63), Walker, Dowell, McKay (Carayol 63), Murphy (Brereton 82)
Subs Not Used: Henderson, Cash, Clough, Ward
Booked: Mills
Goals: McKay 3, Worrall 60, Brereton 89

Bolton Wanderers: Alnwick, Robinson, Beevers, Burke, Little (Wilbraham 88), Pratley (Noone 80), Henry, Vela, Ameobi, Buckley (Armstrong 70), Madine
Subs Not Used: Howard, A Taylor, Cullen, Wheater
Booked: Robinson, Henry
Goals: Buckley 45, Worrall 90+2(og)

Referee: Darren England
Attendance: 22,882

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
11 Ipswich Town 20 27
12 Cheltenham Town 19 27
13 Bolton Wanderers 20 26
14 Accrington Stanley 19 24
15 Charlton Athletic 20 23
View Full Standings >>


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