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Forest 2-3 Brentford

7 March 2017

Nottingham Forest produced a late flurry but it was too late as Brentford left The City Ground with three points after a 3-2 win.

Goals from substitutes Ben Brereton and Zach Clough were not enough after The Bees raced into a 3-0 lead. Lasse Vibe struck a brace and a smart Jota finish sealed the win for the West Londoners.

Gary Brazil made two changes to the side which beat Brighton 3-0 on Saturday, with Dani Pinillos and David Vaughan replacing Armand Traore and Chris Cohen.

It was the visitors who started brightly as they looked threatening coming forward. With two minutes on the clock Vibe had his first sniff of goal as he broke the offside trap but Jordan Smith was equal to his effort, diving low to his left to tip the ball away.

Sergi Canos then tested Smith from long-range and the keeper gathered easily before Jamie Ward fired over and Britt Assombalonga forced visiting stopper Daniel Bentley into a smart save to his left, tipping Britt's curling effort from the edge of the box away.

But it was the visitors who took the lead on 17 minutes as Vibe fired home from a tight angle. From a Forest corner Brentford broke forward and the Danish forward was free on the right of the penalty area. He controlled and shot across Smith and into the top corner for 1-0. 

Vibe almost doubled the lead on 31 as he tried to capitalise on a poor clearance from Smith, lashing an effort first-time into the side netting but it was The Reds who finished the first half the strongest.

Hildeberto Pereira couldn't control the ball at the back post after a great delivery from a Ward free kick and Eric Lichaj danced his way into the box but couldn't get his shot away following a series of corners.

Forest started the second half as they ended the first, on the front foot, and Ben Osborn, arguably The Reds best player on the night, jinked through three challenges on the left-hand side before shooting at goal on 46. Bentley was equal to it, as well as Ward's follow up.

As they did with the first goal, Brentford hit The Reds on the counter attack to double their lead through Vibe on 55. Following a corner The Bees broke forward, outnumbering The Reds defenders allowing Vibe the time to dink an effort over the on-rushing Smith.

The visitors showed more clinical finishing on 68 as Jota added an ultimately decisive third goal. The Spaniard broke the offside trap before cutting back inside on his left foot and firing low and hard past a helpless Smith.

The introduction of Brereton, Clough and Ross McCormack added some fresh impetus to the Forest attack, with McCormack volleying over on 72 and Matty Cash firing into the side netting on 75 after a neat one-two with Lichaj.

Brereton pulled on back on 82 to give Forest a glimmer of hope. Lichaj found himself in space on the right and shot across goal which Bentley could only parry into the path of the 17-year-old who tapped home from the goal line. 

As the fourth official showed for four minutes of injury time, Cash flicked an effort just wide and Clough reduced the deficit to one goal in the third minute of stoppage time. Pinillos's cross from the left was kept alive by McCormack at the back post and Clough was there to head past Bentley. 

But it was too little, too late from The Reds who suffered defeat on Trentside. 

Forest: Smith, Lichaj (c), Worrall, Fox, Pinillos, Pereira (Clough 60'), Vaughan, Cash, Ward (McCormack 64'), Osborn, Assombalonga (Brereton 60')

Unused subs: Evtimov, Tshibola, Carayol, Lam

Goals: Brereton 82', Clough 90'

Bookings: Ward 38', Cash 66'

Brentford: Bentley, Colin, Dean (c), Yennaris (Cole 87'), Egan, Woods, Sawyers, Vibe (Shaibu 75'), Henry, Jota (Jozefzoon 75'), Canos

Unused subs: Bonham, Kerschbaumer, Clarke, Barbet

Goals: Vibe 17', 55', Jota 68'

Booking: Henry 63'

Attendance: 16,903 (Away 432)

Referee: Tim Robinson
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