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Club News

21s beaten by slick Swans

29 September 2014

Oliver Burke scored and two first-team players played 90 minutes in this afternoon’s Under 21s match at The City Ground.

Danny Collins and Dexter Blackstock both played the full game and the latter provided an assist for Burke to score from close range in the first half.

That brought the scores back to 2-1 after the Swans had raced into an early lead, but the visitors went on to extend their lead to 5-1 courtesy of some clinical finishing.

Kieron Fenton's deflected free-kick reduced the arrears to 5-2 seconds before full-time on an afternoon when Greg Halford was substituted in the second half with an injury.

The visitors started the match the brighter of the sides and took the lead on eight minutes when Henry Jones slotted the ball past Ross Durrant with a first-time finish.

Forest replied with two half-chances, Wilfried Gnahore firing the ball wide after a neat one-two with Blackstock before the latter glanced a header wide from Fenton’s cross a minute later.

But Swansea doubled their lead on 13 minutes when, despite the best efforts of Roger Riera on the line, Moduo Barrow latched on to a brilliant ball down the right to score.

The Swans had been impressive but a lapse in defensive concentration allowed Forest back into the game on 24 minutes, Blackstock squaring the ball for Burke to tap home from close range.

And quick thinking from Forest on the half-hour mark almost led to an equaliser. Halford’s long throw picked out the unmarked Blackstock in the area but the Antiguan didn’t connect properly with his volley.

Forest had improved as the half wore on but were on the back foot again as the interval neared. Jones crashed the ball off the bar and Durrant made a good save from Barrow at his near post before Adam King made it 3-1 with an excellent strike from 25 yards.

Ilias Polimos replaced Gnahore at the interval and Forest claimed the first real chance of the second half. Burke took the ball nicely in his stride and showed fantastic pace to go clean through on Swans keeper Oliver Davies, who did well to block the winger’s shot.

But the visitors made it 4-1 when Kenji Gorre turned the ball home from close range after James Loveridge’s cut-back from the right byline.

Burke was then replaced by Nikolay Todorov but it was from a more unlikely source that Forest nearly halved the deficit, Collins generating good power on his header from a corner but failing to beat the keeper.

Halford was next off the field after picking up an injury. Australian Josh MacDonald replaced him shortly before Derrick Otim headed the ball wide from an unmarked position following Polimos’ cross.

And Forest were left frustrated again when Davies made a fantastic save from Todorov, who volleyed the ball towards goal from Walker’s terrific cross.

The visitors had been in clinical mood, however, and Barrow got his second when he latched on to Liam Shephard’s pass to round Durrant and slide the ball into the empty net.

Swansea had further half-chances to extend the lead before Blackstock saw an effort cleared off the line as full-time neared.

But Forest did peg it back to 5-2 seconds before full-time when Davies allowed the ball to slip between his legs from Fenton's deflected free-kick.

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