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Under 23s: Forest 2-1 Mansfield

22 November 2016

A first-half Anthony Wright brace was enough for Nottingham Forest Under 23s as they beat Mansfield Town 2-1 in the Central League Cup.

Lewis Collins had given the Stags hope as he pulled a goal back, but The Reds held on to secure their first win in the competition.

Jack Hobbs was given some much-needed match action as he continues his recovery from injury and Hildeberto Pereira started at right-back to maintain his match fitness while he serves a suspension.

Former Forest midfielder Guy Moussi, who has been training with the club for the past few weeks, was also given some game time as he searches for a new club.

The Reds started the match, played at the Nigel Doughty Academy as Alfreton Town's Impact Arena was waterlogged, brightly and were 2-0 up within the first 15 minutes. Elvis Otim's neat through ball found Ben Brereton on the right channel after ten minutes and his angled shot was parried by the Mansfield keeper. But Wright was on hand to tap home and he repeated the trick five minutes later.

It was Brereton again who was the creator as the forward went on a jinking run, beating a couple of defenders before squaring across goal for the arriving Wright to finish.

Anel Ahmedhodzic almost found the net with a header in between the two goals, meeting a Danny Preston cross to head just wide as Forest dominated the early proceedings.

The visitors grew into the match and started to look more threatening without really testing Chris Marques in the Forest goal and The Reds went into the break 2-0 up and in control of the match.

The second half carried on in a similar vein with most of the play in the Mansfield half, and the home side should have extended their lead on 56 minutes as a superb through ball from substitute Virgil Gomis found Brereton, whose half-volley fizzed past the far post.

Mansfield were gifted a way back into the match though on 65 as a loose pass by Marques landed at the feet of Collins, who fired in to the empty net to give the visitors a lifeline.

Despite pulling a goal back, Mansfield did not threaten the Forest goal and it was The Reds who should have scored again. Firstly, Danny Preston fired into the side netting as he got on the end of a pull back by Pereira, and Brereton was denied by a fine point-blank save by the Mansfield keeper.

Forest were able to hold out for the win and secure their first points in Northern Group Two.

Forest: Marques, Pereira, Nielsen, Hobbs, Preston, Moussi, Ahmedhodzic, R. Worrall (Crookes 71'), Otim (Gomis 53'), Brereton, A. Wright (En Neyah 71')

Unused subs: J. Wright, Re

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