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Match Report


Posted Wed 09 May 12 at 14:30 PM

Nottm Forest v Portsmouth

Nottingham Forest ended the season with a rare home win at the City Ground, beating Portsmouth 2-0 and finishing the season in 19th position.

It was a good start by Forest and there were plenty of shots on goal from both sides in an evenly contested first half but neither team was able to break the deadlock.

Dexter Blackstock finally put Forest in front with 20 minutes remaining and he could have had a hat-trick if it hadn't been for the efforts of the Portsmouth keeper. But Jamie Ashdown was unable to prevent Blackstock's second goal from going in.

With Portsmouth already relegated and Forest safe, neither side had anything to play for but the travelling supporters were determined to enjoy their last game in the Championship. Turning up in fancy dress with beach balls and other inflatables, they made plenty of noise.

Forest looked lively from the kick-off and had a chance in the third minute when Lewis McGugan's cross went past Ricardo Rocha and the ball bounced off Blackstock who had no time to get control, allowing Ashdown to pounce on the ball to stop it going in the back of the net.

Adlene Guedioura had a good chance a minute later when he beat two players to try and get a shot past the Portsmouth keeper from the edge of the box, but Ashdown went down to his left to make a relatively easy save.

Portsmouth's first chance came when Lee Camp fumbled what should have been an easy save of Kelvin Etuhu's shot but Luke Chambers was on hand to clear the danger. 

A good break by Portsmouth saw David Norris shoot from the edge of the box but Greg Cunningham blocked the ball.

And a shot from Chris Maguire from 25 yards out was saved by Camp at the second attempt.

After a quiet period off play the ball broke to Andy Reid on the edge of the box but his effort was deflected out for a corner. 

The ball was soon back at the Trent End and Camp had to produce another save when Varney shot from inside the box.

Forest came close when Reid got high enough to win a header which he aimed at Radi Majewski but his effort was scrambled just wide of the post for a corner.

And they had another chance from a great low ball in from Cunningham. Chris Gunter did well to get in front of his man inside the box but, on the wrong foot, he blazed the ball over the bar.

It was a quiet finish to the half as the chances for both sides dwindled.

Blackstock squandered a chance to give Forest the lead early in the second half after Gunter did well to win the ball and feed it back to the Forest striker but he managed to send the ball over the bar from ten yards out.

It was all Forest for the first eight minutes until Portsmouth made a good break to threaten the Forest defence. 

McCleary was joining in at the back, trying to get the ball away but it was eventually won by Norris who wasted his chance and sent the ball over the bar from just inside the box.

Portsmouth threatened again when Varney crossed low into the penalty area and Gunter did well to get in before Maguire and clear the danger.

It was the end of the season for Majewski when he was replaced 20 minutes into the half by Paul Anderson.

Forest finally took the lead with 20 minutes remaining when Cunningham's cross, across the face of goal, was sent back in by McCleary who cut it back for Blackstock to tap in from a yard out.

Guy Moussi became the second substitute soon after, replacing McGugan.

Forest came close to a second goal when Blackstock's header sent Ashdown diving to his right to make an excellent save.

And Blackstock was frustrated twice more by the Portsmouth keeper, saving another header from Reid's corner and then grabbing the Forest striker's looping header out of the air.

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