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Match pack: Bolton (H)

20 February 2015

Get all the news and views ahead of Nottingham Forest's Sky Bet Championship clash with Bolton Wanderers at The City Ground tomorrow (kick-off 3pm).


        Nottingham Forest v Bolton Wanderers      
   Sky Bet Championship
Saturday 21 February 2015 (kick-off 3pm)
The City Ground

Pre-match brief

Nottingham Forest manager Dougie Freedman faces his former employers this weekend as an improving Bolton Wanderers side make the journey to The City Ground for an intriguing Sky Bet Championship clash.

The Reds are aiming for a second win in as many home matches after outclassing Wigan Athletic by three goals to nil earlier in the month as they look to leapfrog Blackburn Rovers and claim ninth place in the league table.

Bolton arrive on Trentside sitting seven points above the relegation zone following a run of just one win in their last seven matches but Neil Lennon's men will provide a stern test as they aim to pull clear of the bottom three.

Team news

Central-defensive duo Michael Mancienne and Kelvin Wilson could return to the Forest squad upon their respective returns from injury but Jack Hobbs will be out for up to four weeks following his injury at Blackpool last weekend.

Jamaal Lascelles could again step up in Hobbs's absence while manager Dougie Freedman will be without Britt Assombalonga, Chris Cohen and Andy Reid who all remain sidelined with long-term injury problems.

Bolton should be boosted by the return of Matt Mills (knee), Emile Heskey and Craig Davies (both hamstring), though Liam Trotter (thigh) remains a doubt.

Adam Bogdan (ankle), Darren Pratley (hamstring), Mark Davies (knee) will definitely miss out, whilst Marc Tierney (leg) and Max Clayton (knee) remain long-term absences.

View from the Red corner

Dougie Freedman: “I know the Bolton players very well and I understand what they’ve been doing having looked at them very closely. But I think it’s all about us.

“If we go out there and show the same energy and desire we showed in the last home match against Wigan then it’s a winnable game for us.

“I don’t fear anybody in this division – if we’re playing to our high standards then it’s a winnable game.

“We’ve got to get better at certain things and we’ve got to understand that playing for Nottingham Forest does come with responsibility. But we should channel that, not be fearful of it.

Click here to read more of the manager's thoughts ahead of the clash with Bolton.

What's the form guide?

Confidence should be high in the Nottingham Forest camp ahead of tomorrow's game with Dougie Freedman's men having taken seven points from the last available nine including last weekend's incredible 4-4 draw at Blackpool.

The Reds have moved back into the Sky Bet Championship's top ten with an unbeaten three-match run and they will be looking to further close the 12-point gap to the play-off places with a win over Bolton Wanderers tomorrow.


Tomorrow's opponents enjoyed a resurgence under the management of new boss Neil Lennon but have now won just once in seven matches across all competitions which included two FA Cup games against Liverpool.

That sequence has also involved away defeats at Rotherham (4-2) and Derby (4-1) and the Trotters were conceding goals again last weekend as they were beaten 4-3 at home by Watford in a thrilling contest at the Macron Stadium. 

While Lennon's men do struggled to keep goals out of their own net, they are a force to be reckoned at the other end of the pitch having not failed to score in a league game since 0-0 draw with Ipswich on 13 December.

Haven't we met before?

Nottingham Forest ran out 2-1 winners 

In the corresponding fixture last season, Forest ran out comfortable winners over Bolton at The City Ground as goals from Jamie Mackie, Andy Reid and Henri Lansbury sealed a 3-0 success over the Trotters.

Before that victory, The Reds had not beaten Bolton at home since 1995 when goals from Bryan Roy, Jason Lee and a last-minute winner from Colin Cooper gave Forest a thrilling 3-2 win at The City Ground.


Are tickets available?

Tickets are still available for tomorrow's game against Bolton Wanderers.

For more details and for a full list of prices, please click here.

Is there hospitality available?

Hospitality packages are still available for Saturday's visit of Bolton Wanderers to The City Ground with the menu in the Robin Hood Suite and Directors' Club having been picked by club captain Chris Cohen.

Those looking to hear from the Forest captain and enjoy match hospitality can do so with either a Robin Hood Suite ticket at £85 (+VAT) or a Directors’ Club ticket at £175 (+VAT).

For more information on other packages or to make a booking, please e-mail hospitality@nottinghamforest.co.uk or call 0115 982 4450.

Are there any offers on?

Nottingham Forest are offering supporters new concourse catering options for tomorrow's visit of Bolton Wanderers.

Until 2.30pm tomorrow afternoon, all bottles of Carlsberg and IPA are down from £3.80 per bottle to £2 while any pie and hot drink meal is down from £5.10 to just £4.

There will fruit bags on offer to the club's young supporters in the family area while chicken curry, rice and naan bread as well as Rollover hotdogs will be available in all areas of the ground.

The above offer is open to both Nottingham Forest and Bolton Wanderers supporters.

What else is happening?

Nottingham Forest's official charity partner for the 2014-15 season, BLESMA, will be holding a bucket collection outside the ground before tomorrow's game with Bolton.

BLESMA is a national charity which supports British servicemen and women who have lost the use of limbs or eyesight in the honourable service of their country.

What if I can't make the game?

Live audio commentary will be available on Forest Player, as well as free live text commentary on www.nottinghamforest.co.uk and via @Official_NFFC on Twitter.

Forest Player will also have extended match highlights from 12pm on Sunday, as well as all the reaction from the Forest camp.

Is there a programme?

The official matchday programme is available to buy and download for tomorrow's meeting with Bolton.

The 76-page edition, priced at £3, includes a columns from Fawaz Al Hasawi as he talks about the start to Dougie Freedman's reign while the manager speaks about facing his former club for the first time.

There is a feature interview with Reds midfielder Gary Gardner, a look back on last weekend's dramatic day at Blackpool and the usual entertaining columns from Guardian football writer Danny Taylor and comedian Matt Forde.

Forest fans are reminded that they can download the official matchday magazine to their iPad or iPhone. Perfect for supporters unable to attend the game, the download can be accessed via this app now.

Hard copies will be available from all the usual outlets around The City Ground.

What are the odds?

Nottingham Forest are the 21/20 favourites to keep their good form going with a win tomorrow at The City Ground with the draw priced at 12/5 and a victory for the visitors slightly further out at 13/5.

A repeat of The Reds' 3-0 win over Bolton on Trentside last season can be backed at 18/1 or if you fancy a more slender 1-0 victory for Forest then that has odds of 7/1.

Dexter Blackstock netted his first goal in over two years for Forest in the 4-4 draw at Blackpool last weekend and he is priced at 6/1 to score the opening goal in tomorrow's game or 7/4 to score at any time.

For all the latest odds on tomorrow's game, please visit www.skybet.com/forest and make a prediction for Forest v Bolton.

Who is in charge?

Referee: Carl Boyeson
Assistant Referees: Nigel Lugg and William Smallwood
Fourth official: Stuart Attwell

Who else is playing?

Wigan v Charlton (Friday, kick-off 7.45pm)
Middlesbrough v Leeds (Saturday, kick-off 12.15pm)
Blackburn v Blackpool
Brentford v Bournemouth
Brighton v Birmingham
Derby v Sheffield Wednesday
Huddersfield v Cardiff
Ipswich v Reading
Millwall v Fulham
Watford v Norwich
Wolves v Rotherham

                   Match Ball Sponsor

                        Neil Battison


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