Forest 1-1 Ipswich
Liam Trotter scored a 95th-minute goal on his Nottingham Forest debut to earn his side a 1-1 draw with Ipswich Town this afternoon.
Forest found themselves 1-0 down on 75 minutes thanks to Jonathan Parr's excellent finish.
Defeat would have been harsh on a Forest side who had applied plenty of pressure, and the goal their performance deserved eventually came deep into second-half injury time when Trotter turned the ball home from close range.
Jonny Williams was given his first Forest start, replacing the suspended Henri Lansbury.
Kelvin Wilson took the armband in Lansbury's absence, while Tyler Walker took his place on the bench alongside fellow youngsters Jorge Grant and Alex Iacovitti.
Former Reds Luke Chambers and David McGoldrick both started the match for Ipswich.
Williams lined up on the left with Nelson Oliveira and Ryan Mendes up front as Forest opted for a 4-4-2 formation.
And The Reds created the first chance of the game after a good break by Ward. Mendes was played into the area but the angle was tight and the Cape Verde international could only flash the ball across goal and a yard wide of the far post.
Mick McCarthy was forced into an early change a minute later as left back Jonas Knudsen left the field injured, Parr his replacement.
It was proving to be a quiet affair until the 29th minute, when Mendes broke through the middle with only Christophe Berra standing in his way. Trotter provided excellent support to Mendes' left and received the ball on the edge of the area. He curled it across goal but Town keeper Dean Gerken made an excellent save. Forest kept the ball alive in the box, however, and worked it to Ward. Again Gerken played the hero, saving low down at his near post.
Forest were now ramping up the pressure and, five minutes after Cole Skuse entered the referee's notebook for halting a promising Forest counter attack, The Reds created their best chance of the match. Mendes cut in from the left and showed excellent composure, riding a few challenges on the edge of the area before slipping the ball to the unmarked Oliveira. The Portuguese forward didn't get hold of his shot, however, and it was easily dealt with by Gerken.
The home side were looking the far more likely team to score and another opportunity came their way on the stroke of half-time. Ward dinked the ball to the back post and, after appeals that Oliveria was being unfairly held by his marker, the ball dropped for Mendes. The angle was against him, however, and he could only send it into the side netting.
Two minutes of added time were indicated at the end of the half and there was concern for the hosts when Ainsley Maitland-Niles won a corner with seconds to play. Forest broke, however, thanks to a strong run from Oliveira. He played it to his left for Mendes whose low, powerful shot saw the ball fizz wide of the post.
Neither manager made changes at the break and it was McCarthy's men who carved out the first chance of the second half. Good build up play resulted in Parr being presented with a shooting opportunity on the edge of the area. Wilson did well to block the substitute's strike. Moments later, Parr found himself in the book for a cynical foul on Williams.
There were two half-chances for Jamie Ward to open the scoring shortly afterwards. The Northern Irishman saw his shot deflect wide after Ipswich failed to deal with Williams' cross before firing off-target under pressure after more good wing play by Mendes.
And Ward had another sight of goal immediately after Ipswich saw Sears' shot pushed way by de Vries. Forest broke and Ward cut into the area from the left wing. He curled the ball low towards goal but couldn't bend it out of Gerken's reach.
The match was now an end-to-end affair and the visitors had an excellent chance to take the lead just before the hour. McGoldrick shifted the ball on to his left foot in the area and forced an acrobatic save from de Vries. The ball dropped for Murphy but, from a tight angle, he could only ruffle the side netting.
Forest sought an immediate response and Christophe Berra was next into the book as he was penalised for a lunge on Mendes. Oliveira's subsequent free-kick deflected off the wall and wide.
Trotter may have felt his hopes of a debut goal were over when his first-half strike was brilliantly saved by Gerken, but he was presented with another opportunity when Daniel Pinillos's low cross picked him out in the area. Berra positioned himself perfectly to make the block.
Ipswich's defence were tested again shortly afterwards as Mendes and Oliveira worked together to create an opening in the area. For a split second the ball dropped for Oliveira in space six yards out but Town reacted quickly to recover the situation.
Forest's first change saw Grant replace Williams, who departed the field gingerly after taking a knock to the head following an aerial duel with Tommy Smith.
Mendes was looking like Forest's most likely goal source and he tried to break the deadlock again on 70 minutes. He took the ball off David Vaughan's toes 20 yards out before firing it a couple of yards over the bar.
But, with 15 minutes to play, it was Ipswich who took the lead. Kevin Bru's cross was difficult for Eric Lichaj to deal with and the ball dropped for Parr in the box. The substitute struck it perfectly on the half volley, guiding it into the far top corner.
Freedman replaced Ward with Dexter Blackstock with 12 minutes to play but any hopes of Forest getting themselves back into the match were nearly extinguished when Jack Hobbs got the ball caught underneath his feet on the edge of his own area. McGoldrick pounced, but he could only send the ball high over the bar.
Ipswich were showing no signs of resting on their laurels and went close again with nine minutes to go when Daryl Murphy sent the ball whistling wide of the post with a shot from range.
Freedman's final change saw Chris O'Grady replace Hobbs as Forest desperately searched for an equaliser, and they were given six additional minutes in which to try and do so.
And, just when it looked like defeat was inevitable, The Reds forced home an equaliser. Gerken could only punch the ball straight at the feet of Grant following a cross into the box. Grant's strike was blocked heroically on the line but Trotter was first on the scene to turn the ball home and earn his side a 1-1 draw.
Forest: De Vries, Lichaj, Wilson (c), Mendes, Oliveira, Trotter, Ward (Blackstock 78'), Williams (Grant 67'), Vaughan, Hobbs (O'Grady 82'), Pinillos
Subs not used: Evtimov, C.Burke, Walker, Iacovitti
Goal: Trotter 90'
: Gerken, Knudsen (IpswichParr 12'), Chambers (c), Smith, Berra, Maitland-Niles, Skuse (Douglas 68'), Murphy, McGoldrick, Bru, Sears (Malarczyk 86')
Subs not used: Bialkowski, Pitman, Coke, Toure
Goal: Parr 74'
Bookings: Skuse 31', Smith 44', Parr 50', Berra 59'
Referee: Paul Tierney
Attendance: 19,616 (1,918 away)