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Match Reports

Forest v Charlton

18 August 2015

Forest 0-0 Charlton

Nottingham Forest were held to a 0-0 draw by Charlton Athletic at The City Ground this evening.

The Reds, who finished the game with youngsters Oliver Burke, Tyler Walker and Jorge Grant on the field, created a number of chances but were unable to find a winner.

Dougie Freedman handed Oliver Burke his first league start as the 18-year-old came in for Michail Antonio on the right wing.

Michael Mancienne continued at left back after an assured display in that position against Rotherham, while Dexter Blackstock returned to the starting line-up in place of the bench-bound Walker.

Ben Osborn made his first appearance in a matchday squad this season after recovering from a shoulder injury and sickness bug. He took his place on the bench alongside Dimitar Evtimov, Daniel Pinillos, Jack Hobbs and Jamie Paterson.

Forest made a bright start to the match and Chris Burke, captain Henri Lansbury and Dexter Blackstock had half-chances to take the lead within five minutes.

The trio failed to test Addicks keeper Nick Pope, but the visiting stopper was called into action on 11 minutes after his side conceded possession cheaply to Oliver Burke. The winger laid the ball off to Jamie Ward, who raced into space before firing it hard and low towards goal. Pope made the block and his defence eventually cleared the danger.

Forest were completely dominating the early exchanges but, after Mancienne was booked for tugging back a Charlton man, the balance of the game briefly swung in favour of the visitors.

There were two excellent headed opportunities for 6ft 7in striker Simon Makienok, the first coming courtesy of a Morgan Fox cross from the left. The Dane could only head the ball over the bar from a good position.

Four minutes later Makienok had another chance to break the deadlock, although this time he had to work harder to get into a position to meet the cross. It came from Cristian Ceballos, whose dangerous delivery left Forest’s defence with little to do but watch on as Makienok dived to reach the ball. Again, however, he sent it over the bar.

Charlton’s spell of pressure came to a close when Johann Gudmundsson’s excellent free-kick fizzed inches off-target.
The home side were soon back on the front foot and ruing a missed header of their own on 31 minutes. Eric Lichaj produced a superb cross which just evaded the head of a Charlton defender. Blackstock had to leave it late to react and he could only divert the ball wide.

Five minutes later, former French international Alou Diarra was booked for a foul on Ward. The resultant free-kick saw the ball fall for Oliver Burke in the area but his shot was inadvertently blocked by one of his team-mates.

There were half chances for both sides before the first half came to a close, Diarra heading the ball wide from a corner before Lansbury’s shot sailed high into the Bridgford Stand.

But the two sides were unable to break the deadlock and returned to their dressing rooms on level terms.

Forest reemerged unchanged and had a chance to take the lead within four minutes of the restart.

A Reds corner caused problems in the Addicks area and the ball eventually dropped for Mancienne on the bounce, but the ex-Chelsea man was unable to keep his shot down.

Lansbury was next to have an effort at goal following a patient team move on 53 minutes. Chris Burke provided the lay-off for the ex-Arsenal man to strike the ball first time from 20 yards, but he could only send it wide.
Two substitutions followed for The Reds as Freedman sent on youngsters Walker and Grant for Blackstock and Ward, who appeared to have sustained an injury.

And it didn’t take Walker long to get involved as he won a free-kick on the edge of the area inside the ‘D’. Lansbury’s only real option was to strike the ball with power but the Charlton wall stood firm and did its job.

Forest were well in control and showing a willingness to press their visitors high up the field. Their efforts were rewarded just before the hour when The Reds regained possession and Oliver Burke was able to swing over a cross to his namesake Chris.

The Scotsman twisted and turned in the area before eventually finding a gap to lay the ball off to Vaughan on the edge of the area. With a defender bearing down on him the Welsh international had to take his shot first time, sending it over the bar.

It had been a quiet evening for Forest keeper Dorus de Vries, but his concentration levels were tested on 67 minutes when Makienok produced a superb header which looked destined for the net. The Dutchman sprawled to his right to push the ball away one-handed.

And, minutes later, de Vries produced an even better save to instinctively deny Patrick Bauer, who had headed the ball powerfully towards goal from a corner.

Keen not to let their opponents get the upper hand, Forest responded with a chance for Walker. Lansbury supplied the striker, who from the right-hand side of the box sent the ball low and a yard wide of the far post.

The game was finely poised going into the final ten minutes but Lansbury almost gave his side the lead with a curling effort from 25 yards. Pope, who had dived to his left just in case, was relieved to see the ball drift wide.

Pope was rooted to his spot shortly afterwards, however, as Grant was presented with an opportunity to score from six yards. Lansbury laid the ball back from the byline but its speed made it awkward for the young midfielder, who fired it over the bar with a first-time effort.

Five minutes of added time were indicated at the end of the 90 minutes but neither side were able to find a winning goal as the match ended 0-0.

Forest: De Vries, Lichaj, Wilson, Mills, Mancienne, O Burke, Vaughan, Lansbury (c), C Burke, Ward (Grant 55'), Blackstock (Walker 54')

Subs not used: Evtimov, Paterson, Hobbs, Pinillos, Osborn

Bookings: Mancienne 17', Mills 71', Vaughan 88'

CharltonPope, Solly, Diarra, Bauer, Fox, Gudmundsson, Cousins, Kashi, Ceballos (Bergdich 86'), Watt (Ghoochannejhad 64' (Ahearne-Grant 84')), Makienok

Subs not used: Mitov, Sarr, Ba, Jackson

Booking: Diarra 36'

Referee: Darren Drysdale

Attendance: 17,801 (484 away)
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