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Forest 0-2 Wolves

17 December 2016

A goal in each half condemned Nottingham Forest to a 2-0 home defeat to Wolverhampton Wanderers at The City Ground this afternoon.

Paul Lambert's side took all three points back to the West Midlands with Helder Costa and Ivan Cavaleiro both finding the back of the net as Forest slipped to their second defeat in seven days.

Philippe Montanier made five changes from the midweek draw against Preston as Michael Mancienne, Mustapha Carayol, Pajtim Kasami, Jorge Grant and Apostolos Vellios all returned to the starting line-up.

The opening quarter of the contest was a tepid affair with neither side testing the opposition goalkeeper and it took until the 24th minute for an attempt on goal. Matty Cash nodded the ball down to Grant inside the penalty area but the midfielder lashed a shot over the bar.

Forest then came inches away from opening the scoring shortly after the half-hour mark. An excellent left-wing cross from Carayol found its way on to the head of Mancienne inside the area but his effort cleared Carl Ikeme's crossbar by a matter of millimetres.

There were opportunities for both sides as Carayol and Bright Enobakhare came close to opening the scoring but it was to be the visitors who found the first goal with five minutes to play in the first half.

Benfica loanee Costa danced his way into the Forest penalty area and from an impossibly-tight angle, he produced a superb finish to beat Vladimir Stojkovic at his near post and give Wolves the advantage at the interval.

Ben Osborn could have levelled matters nine minutes into the second half but the midfielder was only able to send his shot wide of the near post after latching on to another pinpoint delivery from Carayol from the left-hand side.

Montanier made two changes around the hour mark as David Vaughan and Hildeberto Pereira came on to replace Grant and Carayol respectively but it was Wolves who almost doubled their lead shortly after.

A mistake from Joe Worrall gifted the ball to Cavaleiro 25 yards from goal and although he was able to break into the Forest penalty area, his shot was off-target and cleared Stojkovic's crossbar as Forest were let off the hook. 

Former Benfica man Cavaleiro made no mistake on 79 minutes though. The ball broke to the winger on the edge of the box and he slammed a strike past Stojkovic and into the bottom corner in front of a delirious away end.

Stojkovic was then forced to produce a last-ditch save to prevent Nouha Dicko from making it 3-0 and that was to be the last real action of a disappointing afternoon for The Reds as they look ahead to a tough trip to Huddersfield Town on Boxing Day.

Forest: Stojkovic, Mancienne, Mills (c), Worrall, Lichaj, Kasami (Lica 80), Cash, Grant (Vaughan 59'), Carayol (Pereira 61'), Osborn, Vellios

Subs not used: Henderson, Hobbs, Ahmedhodzic, Dumitru-Cardoso

Bookings: Vellios 32', Mills 57'

Wolves: Ikeme, Doherty, Edwards, Stearman, Batth, Dicko (Bodvarsson 83'), Coady, Costa, Price, Enobakhare (Saiss 69), Cavaleiro (Ronan 81')

Subs not used: Burgoyne, Saville, Iorfa, Hause

Goals: Costa 40', Cavaleiro 79'

Bookings: Price 27', Doherty 78'

Referee: Graham Scott

Attendance: 19,037 (1,923 away)

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