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Match Reports

Barnsley 2-1 Forest

15 August 2017

Nottingham Forest were made to rue a series of missed chances as they fell to their first defeat of the season against Barnsley.

Daryl Murphy had pulled The Reds level in the first half but goals from Matty Pearson and Ryan Hedges sealed the win for a resilient Barnsley side at Oakwell.

Mark Warburton made a single change from the victory over Brentford last weekend, with loan signing Kieran Dowell making his first start in the league, replacing Zach Clough. 

Barnsley were on the front foot from the off and quickly took the lead through defender Pearson after four minutes. A free kick conceded by The Reds was met at the back post by Pearson who nodded the ball back across goal and into the far corner to give The Tykes the lead.

Forest responded instantly creating two chances of their own both of which fell to Murphy.

Firstly, after a neat pull back from Tendayi Darikwa, the number nine struck the outside of the post from a tight angle and then three-minutes later the striker managed to turn his defender only to drag his left footed shot wide from just inside the area.

Both sides continued to look dangerous on the break, with the home side edging the best of the chances, but Forest found an equaliser through Murphy on 26 minutes.

Barrie McKay chased onto a through ball from Dowell and provided a perfect pin-point cross for Murphy who placed a header past Adam Davies in the Barnsley goal. 

That goal gave the visitors a lift and a second goal nearly came from McKay who failed to convert a Ben Osborn cross at the back post. Osborn then in the 38th minute nearly scored himself after being played through by Murphy, cutting inside to beat his man only to see his shot skim past the post and go wide.

As they did in the first half, Barnsley didn’t take long to get on the scoresheet at the start of the second as Hedges restored the lead on 50 minutes.

The winger drifted across the edge of the visitors’ penalty area unchallenged and produced a lethal left-footed shot to beat the despairing dive of Jordan Smith.

The visitors again reacted positively to going behind and created a host of chances. Darikwa stood a ball up to the back post which Osborn controlled neatly but failed to compose himself in front of goal as he dragged his effort well wide.

Mark Warburton introduced Mustapha Carayol mid-way through the second half as The Reds went in search of an equaliser and he created the clearest opportunity in the 84th minute.

The Gambian international charged through the middle to free Dowell on the right of the penalty area. The Everton loanee was in plenty of space but opted for a first-time shot which he hit tamely straight at Davies.

Darikwa equally went close in stoppage time for The Reds only to see his side-footed volley at the back post brilliantly tipped around the post by Davies. 

Forest continued to dominate possession and throw everything at the Barnsley rearguard but they failed to find that elusive second goal and suffered their first defeat of the season.

Forest: Smith, Mancienne (c) (Traore 46'), Mills, Worrall, Darikwa, Vaughan (Carayol 70’), Bouchalakis, Osborn, McKay (Cummings 78’), Dowell, Murphy

Unused subs: Evtimov, Lichaj, Clough, Brereton

Goal: Murphy 26’

Booking: Mancienne 30’

Barnsley: Davies, McCarthy, Jackson, MacDonald (c), Pearson, Hedges, Moncur (Bird 66’), Williams, Potts, Hammill (Barnes 90’), Bradshaw

Unused subs: Townsend, Pinnock, Payne, Mowatt, Ugbo

Goals: Pearson 4’, Hedges 50’

Bookings: Potts 81’, Williams 87’

Attendance: 13,883 (Away 2,903)

Referee: Tony Harrington

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