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Match Reports


2 December 2017

Waghorn bags his 10th of the season as Town march on

Town stayed firmly in the Play-Off picture with an entertaining win over Forest at Portman Road.

Martyn Waghorn was at the heart of the victory, having a hand in two goals and bagging his 10th of the season.

Everton loanee Callum Connolly scored for the second successive game to put Town in front early on but his Goodison Park team-mate, Kieran Dowell, levelled for the visitors.

Dominic Iorfa headed in his first goal for Blues before Tyler Walker took the sides into the break on equal terms.

The outstanding Waghorn latched onto a mistake by Michael Mancienne to put Town in front for the third time and Bersant Celina sealed the win from Waghorn’s pass midway through the second-half.  

Iorfa was the only change to the team that beat Derby in midweek, the Wolves loanee replacing the suspended Luke Chambers.

Waghorn sent an early free-kick over the bar from 30 yards, Grant Ward then trying to find the former Rangers striker with a cross from the right, Mancienne clearing the danger.

Town didn’t have to wait long for the breakthrough though. Seven minutes in, Waghorn’s free-kick was only half saved by Jordan Smith and Connolly was first to react.  

Former Blue, Daryl Murphy, headed over as Forest looked for an immediate reaction, Joe Worrall sending another header wide from Ben Osborn’s delivery.

Ward blazed over from a good position after Connolly set him up, then it needed a brilliant double save from Bart Bialkowski to deny first Murphy, then claw the ball off the line with Hawkeye no doubt having a close look.

Cole Skuse dragged a left footer wide but Forest were back on level terms on 29 minutes, Dowell curling a left foot free-kick into the far corner from 25 yards.

Jordan Spence cleared after good work by Murphy before Town went back in front on 37 minutes with Celina and Jonas Knudsen combining down the left and from the Dane’s cross, Iorfa headed in at the far post.

Emyr Huws thundered a shot over but Forest equalised again three minutes before the break when Walker finished superbly after Liam Bridcutt had found him with a clever pass.     

Bialkowski had to be alert to force over a right foot shot from Murphy as the second-half opened up with Forest forcing the play but a mistake by Mancienne let in Waghorn on 53 minutes and the striker never looked like missing.

Bialkowski saved at his near post from Armand Traore, Waghorn fizzing a free-kick over the bar after Ward had been fouled, then at the other end Knudsen cleared as Murphy threatened.    

Blues put daylight between the teams on 66 minutes, Huws released Waghorn inside the right channel and with a shot on, the striker slid the ball across to Celina instead and he finished first time to ensure there would be no recovery from Forest.

Bialkowski did have to claw the ball off the line again from Murphy in added on time as Blues completed a double over east midlands opposition this week.  

Town: Bialkowski, Iorfa, Spence, Webster, Knudsen, Skuse, Connolly, Ward, Huws (Bru 70), Celina, Waghorn (Sears 83). Subs not used: Gerken, Bishop, Nydam, Kenlock, Morris. Booked: Waghorn, Connolly.

Forest: Smith, Lichaj, Mancienne, Traore, Bridcutt, Murphy, Osborn (Carayol 68), Vaughan (Bouchalakis 66), Dowell, Walker (McKay 80), Worrall. Subs not used: Henderson, Mills, Clough, Cummings. Booked: Dowell, Bridcutt.

Att: 16,808



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