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The winning run goes on

19 July 2016

Nottingham Forest beat Port Vale 2-0 in their latest pre-season friendly.

A Matt Mills header and a spectacular strike from Britt Assombalonga put the game beyond the League One side at Vale Park.

Philiippe Montanier fielded a younger starting 11 than against Braga last week, with Jordan Gabriel, Jorge Grant, Ryan Yates, Anel Ahmedhodzic, Alex Iacovitti and Joe Worrall all starting.

Dorus de Vries, Ben Osborn, Lars Veldwijk, Mills and Assombalonga brought some experience to the line-up, the latter claiming the first shot with only two minutes on the clock. He could only curl the ball straight at Vale keeper Jak Alnwick from just outside the area.

The sweltering conditions appeared to stifle both sides' attacking approach in the first half and, during a 30th-minute drinks break, Osborn came off for Apostolos Vellios.

De Vries was tested from range shortly afterwards, Anthony de Freitas striking the ball well from 25 yards but failing to beat the Dutchman.

And it looked like the half would end in stalemate until Forest won a corner on 40 minutes. Grant swung the ball over Alnwick's outstretched arm on to the head of Mills at the back post, who made no mistake in giving The Reds the lead.

Montanier made two changes at the break as Dimitar Evtimov and Thomas Lam replaced de Vries and Mills.

Forest were unchanged in attack and nearly had a second goal when Veldwijk laid the ball off for Grant in space. Alnwick made an excellent save low down to deny the midfielder.

The keeper was busy again moments later when he positioned himself well to save Worrall's header from a corner, but there was nothing he could do when the ball dropped to Assombalonga on 55 minutes. The forward spun towards goal and dipped the ball over Alnwick from the edge of the area, making it 2-0 and drawing applause from every supporter inside Vale Park.

JJ Hooper tried to conjure an immediate response when he latched on to a pass in the area, but he could only guide the ball wide of the post.

Vellios had returned to the bench in place of Oliver Burke and the winger carved out Forest's next chance on 75 minutes. He spotted Grant unmarked at the back post and drifted the ball over to him. Grant had plenty of time to set himself for the shot, striking the ball well but seeing his effort saved strongly by Alnwick.

Midfielders Matty Cash and Chris Cohen replaced Ahmedhodzic and Yates as the clock ticked down towards full-time, although Cohen made a speedy return to the bench with what looked like a minor knock - Henri Lansbury his replacement.

Evtimov had been tested once or twice in the second half but stood up to the challenge, ensuring Forest held on to a clean sheet and a 2-0 win.
FOREST STARTING XI:
 De Vries, Gabriel, Worrall, Mills, Iacovitti, Yates, Ahmedhodzic, Assombalonga, Osborn, Grant, Veldwijk

Subs used: Vellios, Evtimov, Lam, Burke, Cash, Cohen, Lansbury

Myprotein are Nottingham Forest's official pre-season partner and are offering Forest fans a 15% discount on their products. For more information, please click here.

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