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'We won our battles'

25 November 2016

Nottingham Forest manager Philippe Montanier felt winning key battles all over the pitch was the main reason why his side ran out 5-2 winners over Barnsley.

A topsy-turvy start saw Forest concede two simple goals to the Tykes, but The Reds responded well to go into half time 3-2 up.

Montanier said: “We started very badly. I was angry about the first 20 minutes as defensively we lost a lot of duels but we had a good reaction. We were very efficient offensively and in the second half we were better defensively and with the ball.

“We changed the system a little to 4-5-1 as we had difficulty to control their full backs and afterwards it was better. The second half we won the duels and it was important in this game as every time we tried to attack and to score.

“We had the same system last game against Ipswich and we didn’t concede and the opportunity for them to score. When you play different systems the most important thing is to win the duels and we were not strong enough in the first 20 minutes. We corrected it but it was good to win this game.”

Henri Lansbury was the goalscoring hero as he bagged his first career hat-trick, much to the delight of the Frenchman.

He said: “I am very satisfied with Henri since the beginning. He is one of the captains and has shown a good mentality and is an example for the younger players and everybody. I enjoyed his three goals, I think it is his first hat-trick and I hope it is not the last.

“We have the capacity to score. Britt is important for us but when he was injured before we scored goals too. I have confidence and we have to find a good balance for the defence and attack. The first two goals were a present for the opponent and the second half was better defensively.”

The match also saw a return to match action for Nicklas Bendtner, Matty Cash and David Vaughan after injury, much to the delight of Montanier.

He said: “It is important as during December we have a lot of games and we need everybody. Matty Cash played well and Nicklas too. We need to maintain this level of performance with the substitutes and for that we need everybody.

“I hope Britt will be bac next week. It is not a serious injury and I did not want to take a risk with him. Eric [Lichaj] was the same and Dani [Pinillos] will be several weeks. I hope to recover them for the next game against Newcastle.”

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