Goals in either half from Lewis Grabban and Sammy Ameobi saw Nottingham Forest return to winning ways at Luton Town this afternoon.
A fine goal by Grabban opened the scoring before Ameobi’s curling finish gave The Reds breathing space. Callum McManaman’s late strike set up a tense finish but Forest held firm for a big three points away from home.
The match started in terrible conditions, with the players fighting through wet and windy weather at Kenilworth Road but the game was open as both sides went in search of the opening goal.
The first half-chance fell the way of the home side as Harry Cornick flicked Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu’s corner into the side netting on 10 minutes, but two minutes later a golden chance fell for Lewis Grabban.
The Forest frontman took Joe Lolley’s incisive pass in his stride and looked certain to score from 12 yards out in front of goal but managed to fire high and wide of the target.
Luton had a goal chalked off for offside on 24 as Dan Potts converted at the back post before Grabban fired just wide a minute later for The Reds.
Forest looked dangerous in attack, with Lolley and Grabban particularly threatening, and it was Grabban who opened the scoring on 39 minutes. Yuri Ribeiro's long pass found Grabban on halfway who did well to hold off two challenges before calmly slotting past goalkeeper James Shea from just inside the area to put The Reds in front.
Forest started the second half positively and could have doubled their lead through Lolley on 52 as he headed Matty Cash’s cross wide of the target, but on the hour-mark it was two as Lolley’s cross from the right was controlled by Ameobi who then curled an effort around Luton defenders and into the corner of the net.
Following the second goal, the home side started to create opportunities of their own as Kazenga Lualua looked a threat down their left-hand side, forcing Brice Samba into a low save on 75 before James Collins had the ball in the net only to see the offside flag raised once again.
Luton had the ball in the net for the third time in the game on 87 and this time the goal was allowed as substitute Callum McManaman turned and curled a fine effort into the top corner from 18 yards out to set up a grandstand finish.
But The Reds held firm as they secured a vital three points on the road and climbed up to fifth in the table.
Forest: Samba, Cash, Worrall, Figueiredo, Ribeiro, Watson (c), Silva, Yates, Ameobi (Adomah 71’), Lolley (Robinson 83’), Grabban (Mir 90’)
Unused subs: Muric, Carvalho, Chema, Johnson
Goals: Grabban 39’, Ameobi 58’
Booking: Worrall 69’
Luton: Shea, Bree (Bolton 70’), Bradley (c), Pearson, Potts, Cranie, Tunnicliffe, Mpanzu, Cornick (McManaman 59’), Brown (LuaLua 33’), Collins
Unused subs: Sluga, Shinnie, Jones, Butterfield
Goal: McManaman 87’
Referee: Gavin Ward
Attendance: 10,053 (1,017 away)