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A fighting display

12 January 2016

Nottingham Forest manager Dougie Freedman was pleased with how his side ‘dug in’ after going down to ten men against Birmingham tonight.

The Reds saw David Vaughan red-carded with the scores locked at 1-1 but closed the game out comfortably - and could even have snatched a late winner.

Freedman said: "We didn’t start very well tonight, which is not like us at home. Birmingham took the lead and credit to them - they deserved it. We fought back and went into half-time at one-each, which I think was fair.

"Second half, not a lot happened for us in terms of creativity. We lost our playmaker, which put us down to ten men against a very good Birmingham side. I can see why they’re seventh in the league - they’re very well organised with a goal threat up front in Donaldson.

"Very easily we could have lied down and be beaten but we didn’t - we dug in and took a very good point.”

Vaughan’s impending suspension hits Forest doubly hard after Henri Lansbury suffered a serious ankle injury in their last match.

But Freedman was relieved to see Bojan Jokic make a positive impression in The Reds’ other problem position: left back.

The manager said: "I thought he was immense - one of the best debuts I’ve had as a manager. The tackle he made at the end, I don’t know where it came from - it was wonderful.

"I thought he was mature in his performance - I knew he wouldn’t be fazed, the guy’s had 70 caps, but I was worried about his fitness. He proved me wrong there, standing up in a Championship game against a very quick, counter-attacking side that are going to catch you out at times.”

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