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On this day in association with Football Index - Reds have one foot in the final

9 April 2020

Apologies, this video is unvailable.

In association with Football Index, we take a look back to on this day in 1980 as Nottingham Forest kept up their pursuit of consecutive European Cups by defeating Ajax in the first leg of the semi-final at The City Ground...

Nottingham Forest 2-0 Ajax

(Francis 33', Robertson pen 60')

Forest: Shilton, Anderson, Gray, McGovern, Lloyd, Burns, O'Neill, Bowles, Birtles, Francis, Robertson

Ajax: Schrijvers, Boeve, Wijnberg, Zwamborn, Krol, Lerby, Jensen, Arnesen, La Ling (Bonsink 51'), Tahamata, Schoenaker


Nottingham Forest secured breathing space ahead of the second leg in Amsterdam as they defeated Ajax 2-0 in the first leg of the European Cup semi-final at The City Ground on 9th April 1980.

Forest were dominant throughout as they looked to secure their second consecutive final and could have taken the lead through Martin O'Neill, but Ajax keeper Piet Schrijvers did well to keep it out.

Just after the half-hour mark, The Reds were ahead as John Robertson's corner was almost deflected in at the near post, it was blocked on the line and Trevor Francis was on hand to lash home from close range.

Kenny Burns forced Schrijvers into another save towards the end of the second half as The Reds looked to increase their advantage before the interval, with Garry Birtles dragging an effort wide after the restart.

But on the hour mark it was two for Forest as good work by Francis kept the ball alive inside the Ajax penalty area, with Kees Zwamborn handling in the box. Up stepped Robertson who calmly stroked the ball past Schrijvers and into the bottom corner to give The Reds a two-goal lead ahead of the second leg. 


European Cup run 1980

Forest went on to reach the final, lifting the trophy with a 1-0 win against Hamburg in Madrid. Here's the run to that final:

First round

Oesters Vaxjo (H) – September 19th – Won 2-0
Oesters Vaxjo (A) – October 3rd – Drew 1-1

Second round

Arges Pitesti (H) – October 24th – Won 2-0
Arges Pitesti (A) – November 7th – Won 2-1

Third round

Dynamo Berlin (H) – March 5th – Lost 1-0
Dynamo Berlin (A) – March 19th – Won 3-1


Ajax (H) – April 9th – Won 2-0
Ajax (A) – April 23rd – Lost 1-0


Hamburg – May 28th – Won 1-0

In the charts

The Jam were at the top of the UK music charts on 9th April 1980 with their hit 'Going Underground'. It reached top spot on 22nd March before being replaced on 12th April.

At the cinema

Kramer vs Kramer was at the top of the UK box office in April 1980. The film, starring Dustin Hoffman and Meryl Streep, is a legal drama telling the story of a couple's divorce, its impact on their young son, and the subsequent evolution of their relationship and views on parenting.


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