Three first-half goals saw Nottingham Forest lose 3-1 to bottom-of-the-table Yeovil Town and slip to sixth place in the Championship. Matt Thomas offers a fan’s eye view from Huish Park…
A packed away end gathered (once again) anticipating three points and a chance to put pressure on the leaders at the top. We were amused by the Two Little Boys Yeovil anthem, the pitch looked in good nick and most of us wouldn’t have recognised a single player in the Yeovil team were we to bump into them on the street. Lansbury was suspended but with Chalobah back in a strong-looking lineup, the scene was set. What could go wrong?
Once play got underway, we were not even too disconcerted to fall behind to a deflected, yet admittedly well-struck, opener. And when we missed our third penalty effort in four, the alarm bells were merely warming up. As the half wore on, we had the lion’s share of possession and were making enough openings to suggest that it would be when, not if, we got back into the game. However, we always looked vulnerable and after allowing Upson too much space he crashed an even better effort than his opener across the goal to Darlow’s right and into the bottom corner. Almost immediately, we clawed our way back into the game with Chalobah nodding in from close range at the back stick.
Were that to be the last meaningful event of the half, I think that there would have been real belief that we could turn it round in the second-half. Sadly, it wasn’t. Yeovil scored again almost straight away – an off-the-line clearance deemed over the line (rightly being the consensus). Significantly then, Chalobah picked up a booking – which looked likely to be added to were he to remain on the pitch. Billy presumably replacing him at half-time for this reason.
All of which added up to a mountain to climb in the second-half. One which, despite some valiant effort and no small amount of decent chances, we never managed to scale.
We had a flurry of corners, encountered some inspired goalkeeping and witnessed some sloppy finishing. There were excellent last ditch blocks, predictable time wasting and – as seems to be the norm in times of adversity these days – our back line playing up front for the last 10 minutes. Lascelles on another day could easily have bagged a brace.
I’m finding this a difficult game to categorise – the effort was there, some of the play good, enough chances to win two games yet alone one… Yet it didn’t feel like we were robbed.
Our main downfall to me seeming to be the lack of cohesion in midfield (the constant change of personnel obviously playing a part here) and the old chestnut of not being clinical enough.
It is still early days and there is plenty of time and many points to play for yet, so I’m putting it down as one of those days.
The only other event of note was the pursuit – and I’m assuming ejection – of some knucklehead Forest fan attacking the Yeovil mascot at half-time. Some people are just wired differently I guess.
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