Stephen McLaughlin returned from an ankle injury by playing 45 minutes in this afternoon’s 1-1 draw away at Leicester Under 21s.Adam N’Kusu Landu’s second-half penalty cancelled out Ben Marshall’s twelfth-minute strike to earn The Reds an impressive point against the league-leaders.
A lively start saw Marshall and Tom Hopper go close before the hosts took the lead on 12 minutes.
Marshall cut in from the left and sent a right-footed curler towards goal. Dimitar Evtimov got his fingertips to it but couldn’t generate enough contact to divert it away from the top corner.
Jamie Vardy then blasted just wide before Martyn Waghorn smashed a free-kick inches over the crossbar.
Forest had struggled to get to grips with their experienced opponents in windy conditions at Middlesex Road, but they almost had an equaliser on 27 minutes when Ben Osborn shifted on to his left and fired narrowly over from 25 yards.
With four minutes to play in the half, Waghorn showed exceptional control to bring down a lofted ball on the right. He cut it back for Vardy who saw his effort blocked by Jamaal Lascelles.
On the stroke of half-time, Vardy’s pace allowed him to latch onto a ball in the left-hand channel. His low left-footed cross was perfect for Waghorn but the ex-Sunderland striker was denied by a good Evtimov stop.
McLaughlin was replaced by Gnahore at the break and The Reds made a bright start to the second-half.
Conrad Logan was forced to make two saves in quick succession from Jorge Grant and Deimantas Petravicius as The Reds stepped up their chase for a leveller.
Evtimov then made a decent save from Waghorn after he latched on to Hopper’s header.
But it was Forest who next had the ball in the net on 59 minutes. Gnahore slipped Osborn into the area and the referee had no option but to award a penalty after the midfielder’s heels were clipped.
Adam N’Kusu Landu made no mistake from the spot and Forest had a deserved equaliser.
And they almost had a winner with seven minutes to play. Peter Gregory’s cross from the right picked out an unmarked Petravicius at the back post, but the Lithuanian’s touch let him down and the ball rolled into Logan’s grasp.
That was the final opportunity of the afternoon and The Reds’ penultimate match of the season ended 1-1.
Forest: Evtimov, Gregory, Lascelles, Regan, Fenton (Kamaneno 67’), Grant, Wallace, Osborn, Petravicius McLaughlin (Gnahore 46’), N’Kusu Landu,
Unused Subs: Smith, Gorman, Hollingsworth
Goals: Marshall (12’), N’Kusu Landu (59’)