Having won just one of their last eight league and cup games, Leicester proceeded to put four past Forest last night. James Bolton reports.

There were four changes for Forest’s trip to the King Power Stadium for the FA Cup 3rd Round Replay against Leicester. George Boateng, Paul Anderson, Robbie Findley and Andy Reid came into a side that reverted to a 4-2-3-1 formation.


After a horrendous defeat to Southampton on Saturday, things somehow got even worse and the signs were ominous from the very start. A Paul Gallagher corner was headed out to Neil Danns, and his rasping first time effort was blocked on the line by the head of Guy Moussi.

Leicester continued to plunge forward and when Gallagher’s reverse pass gave Lloyd Dyer acres of space to drilling a cross through the Forest six-yard box, there was only going to be one outcome. It landed in the back of the Forest net, with the decisive touch coming from Boateng.

Anderson and Greg Cunningham linked up well down the left and the latter’s cross was not dealt with by Kasper Schmeichel and his parry fell to Findley, but the American somehow shot over the bar from just one yard out. It was clichés all round. “Easier to score than to miss”, “my Gran could have scored that”, all of which are true, simply pick your favourite. I think it is possibly the worst miss I have seen in my life. Rosenthal, Kanu and Yakubu, eat your heart out.

Forest were completely unable to keep hold of the ball and Leicester’s hustling and harrying meant they were always quick to retain possession.

Gallagher let fly with a couple of long range efforts, but the home side doubled their lead and, unforgivably, this one came from a Forest corner.

Reid’s poor ball in was easily cleared and David Nugent ran from his own six-yard area into the Forest half unchallenged and spread the ball to Danns. He then found the overlapping right-back Lee Peltier who, level with our box, clipped the ball into the centre. Lee Camp, who didn’t have a Leicester player within five yards of him, failed to punch away and Jermaine Beckford headed in off the bar from six yards out.

Just like Harewood and do Prado on Saturday, Findley and Beckford demonstrated perfectly the problems Forest have in front of goal; the level of finishing is miles apart.

Nugent nearly got his own name on the score sheet, when he picked up a clever pass from Richie Wellens, before curling wide of Camp’s post.

Forest had another opening go to waste when Findley got himself into a good position down the right flank and whipped in an inviting cross to Harewood but, six yards out, he failed to even hit the target.

Another miss from Findley, this time with a free header six yards out from an Reid free kick, heaped the misery on Forest even more.

Leicester hit Forest at speed again just before the break, Moussi was caught out by a Nugent run and when Beckford played in a ball over the top, the former Pompey man cut the ball back to Gallagher, but his stinging effort was just palmed away by Camp.

The half-time whistle blew and drew the first half to a close. Yet again, Forest were second best, had wasted the few chances they had managed to fashion and we showing absolutely no desire, guts or determination.

At half-time Steve Cotterill brought on Lewis McGugan and David McGoldrick for Boateng and Jonathan Greening, and despite a brighter opening to the second half, Forest found themselves three goals down on the 50-minute mark.

Schmeichel punted a long ball up field and Joel Lynch uncharacteristically lost his aerial battle with Nugent, whose flick on found Beckford. He ghosted round a flat-footed Moussi and dinked the ball beautifully over the onrushing Camp. It was a delightful finish and the Foxes were coasting.

Just six minutes later and Beckford had his hat trick. Wellens poked a ball into his path between Lynch and Moussi, and despite Camp doing his best to keep out Beckford’s first effort, he could do nothing about the rebound which Beckford chipped home.

I think you’ll forgive me for not really paying attention to the game beyond this point, but if you would like a summary of the other 24 minutes of the match then look no further than BBC Radio Nottingham’s Colin Fray. The line “it’s a case of every Leicester player touching the ball before a Forest player does” is probably the best summary I can give you.

A special mention to the 1,651 away fans that didn’t stop singing all night. We heard you on the radio, we heard you on the television and you did us proud. Better representatives of our club than the players ever will be. The chants of “you’re not fit to wear the shirt” really did hammer it home.

At the moment, as far as I can see, the club are facing two dead ends. Any manger on a run of one win in 11 games would have one foot out the exit door. But with no cash to pay him off, we’re stuck with him. Dead end number two takes the form of a trap door, heading straight for League One.

West Ham on Saturday. Gulp.

James runs the View From The Mainstand blog and NFFC Stats on Twitter.

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