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Match Reports

Forest 1-0 Norwich

21 November 2017

Daryl Murphy's goal moved Nottingham Forest up to seventh in the Sky Bet Championship following a 1-0 win over Norwich at The City Ground.

The Irishman got the only goal of the game with 13 minutes to play to secure a fourth successive home win for The Reds and keep them within two points of the play-off places.

Mark Warburton made two changes to the side beaten at Birmingham City on Saturday as Ben Brereton and Tyler Walker made way for David Vaughan and Daryl Murphy respectively.

Norwich had the first sight of goal with only two minutes on the clock after Tendayi Darikwa fouled former Forest man Nelson Oliveira on the edge of the penalty area. James Maddison stepped up to take the free-kick but the wall stood firm and The Reds were able to clear the danger.

Murphy was looking sharp on his return from international duty and fired a shot straight at Angus Gunn before the Norwich goalkeeper came off his line well to smother at the striker's feet as he made his way towards goal.

It was Forest who were having the clearer sights of goal and Gunn had to be alert once again to produce a fine save to prevent Kieran Dowell from opening the scoring after he had met Murphy's ball inside the Norwich penalty area.

The visitors could have snatched the lead shortly before half-time as Maddison whipped a dangerous free-kick into the penalty area from the left but fortunately for Forest the ball evaded everyone and it was goalless at the interval.

Liam Bridcutt picked up his fifth booking of the season for a foul on Oliveira early in the second half before the former Forest striker saw his curling free-kick pushed around the post courtesy of a strong save from Jordan Smith.

The second half was struggling to catch light but Warburton sought to change that by replacing Barrie McKay with Mustapha Carayol. The substitute almost made an instant impact as he charged at the Norwich defence but his powerful effort was held by Gunn.

Carayol was causing problems for the visitors' back four and he set up the winning goal soon after. His right-wing cross was perfect for Murphy to get on the end of and the Irishman was able to stab the ball beyond Gunn at the near post to put Forest in front.

As Norwich strived to find an equaliser, Forest were forced to defend manfully and they did so with Joe Worrall, Michael Mancienne and Matt Mills all making some crucial interventions.

Despite referee Tony Harrington adding on five minutes of stoppage time at the end of the second half, Forest held out to claim a vital three points and keep their strong home form going ahead of Sunday's clash with high-flying Cardiff at The City Ground.

Forest: Smith; Darikwa (Mills 51'), Worrall, Mancienne (c), Lichaj; Vaughan, Bridcutt; McKay (Carayol 69'), Dowell (Bouchalakis 88'), Osborn; Murphy

Subs not used: Henderson, Clough, Brereton, Cummings

Goal: Murphy 77'

Booking: Bridcutt 49'

Norwich: Gunn; Stiepermann, Klose (Zimmermann 46'), Hanley, Pinto (c); Watkins, Hoolahan (Murphy 74'), Vrancic, Reed (Jerome 85'), Maddison; Oliveira

Subs not used: McGovern, Wildschut, Franke, Cantwell

Bookings: Reed 65', Watkins 90'

Referee: Tony Harrington

Attendance: 23,831 (1,466 away)

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