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Match Report: Nottingham Forest 0-1 Bristol City (Bristol Fan's Perspective)

Sunday 8th April 2012
Bristol City gained a valuable three points and climbed out of the relegation zone with a hard fought victory at Nottingham Forest.

A Chris Wood penalty early in the second half was enough for the Robins, who had keeper Dean Gerken to thank for keeping them in the game with a string of outstanding saves.

It means that City are now one point and one place ahead of Coventry, with a decisive game against the Sky Blues on Easter Monday.

City manager Derek McInnes made three changes from last week's draw with Derby, with Jamie McAllister, Martyn Woolford and Chris Wood returning to the starting line-up.

It was Forest that started the brightest through the dangerous Gareth McCleary, who was a constant handful for the City defence. The Forest midfielder linked up with brilliantly with Adlène Guedioura, and the Algerian then clipped the ball over the head of Jamie McAllister perfectly for the overlapping Chris Gunter to latch onto. The Forest right-back then played a dangerous first time ball along the six yard box which narrowly missed the onrushing Dexter Blackstock.

City's first chance on goal came through Andre Amougou. McAllister's floated cross found the head of the defender, but his looping header lacked any power and went narrowly past the post.

Gerken was finally forced into a save just before half time. The keeper pushed Andy Reid's powerful effort into the side netting, leaving some Forest fans celebrating thinking it was a goal.

Forest kept up the pressure early in the second half and Andy Reid again forced Gerken into a save, and this lead McInnes to introduce Albert Adomah into the match.

Against the run of play City mustered their first meaningful attack of the second half. A deep ball in from the right from Richard Foster caused problems for Lee Camp in the Forest goal, and his spilled catch fell to the feet of Jon Stead. In a rush to make amends for his mistake, Camp came rushing out of his goal only to clatter the City striker and gave away a penalty.

Wood's penalty low to the keeper's left had just enough to beat the diving Camp, but the Robins fans behind the goal didn't care as City were leading at Forest, where they hadn't won since 1955.

From then on City were on the back foot as Forest pressed for an equaliser. Gerken thwarted Joel Lynch with a brilliant one handed save from Reid's free kick. He then denied Marcus Tudgay and Blackstock in quick succession as the home crowd became increasingly frustrated.

City thought they'd snatched a decisive second when Woolford pounced on Wood's parried shot, but the midfielder was wrongly flagged offside.

Instead, City soaked up one final onslaught of Forest pressure to record a first win in six games, helped hugely by the brilliant performance of Gerken.

The Robins are now one point clear of the relegation zone ahead of a hotly anticipated Easter Monday fixture against Coventry City in front of a 19,000 sell out crowd at Ashton Gate.
Thomas Langridge

Total articles: 7

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