Forest 5 - 1 Leicester City
05/12/09 13:00 Category: Championship
Leicester was supposed to present the first of three tough games this week but in the end it proved to be a different story. We fully deserved the margin of victory and from the moment we scored the first, the result was never in doubt. This season just gets better and better and we currently fear no one but the forthcoming trips to Sheffield and Swansea will tell us whether that’s justified.
They couldn’t match the passion and commitment through our side and a succession of 50-50 challenges were won by those in red. Leicester were such a shambles at times that they resorted to two unforced changes in the first half an hour, without any improvement. Their centre backs couldn’t live with the movement of Earnshaw or Blackstock’s ability to bring others into the game.
The only blemish on another excellent defensive display was Wilson’s rash challenge that should have conceded a penalty. His mis-timed challenge was easily inside the area for which the referee and linesman both rightly indicated a penalty. For some reason, the they consulted again and changed his mind to a free kick. Much amusement all round but those in blue failed to see the funny side.
Camp was a virtual spectator for the game with Leicester creating very little due to the quality of our defence and their deficiencies in attack. Gunter and Shorey dominated their opponents to the extent that they spent most of the game supporting our attacks. Shorey hasn’t been properly tested and the remaining games this week should tell us more.
Wilson and Morgan continue to go from strength to strength and were very rarely troubled by the Fryatt, Waghorn, Howard pairings. Wilson got lucky with the non-penalty decision whilst the decision against Morgan was laughable at best. Apart from these rare incidents, one of these two was always on hand with that important clearing header or block.
Majewski was probably the one outfielder who didn’t really perform on the day but the quality of this team performance was so good that it didn’t matter. McKenna had another very impressive afternoon, showing all the qualities that have become a trademark of his season so far. He held the midfield together allowing Anderson and Cohen to run with freedom throughout the pitch.
Cohen had an immediate impact on his return to the midfield, he was everywhere. Typified our non-stop running and hassling attitude from front to back which the visitors could not match or deal with.
Anderson was obviously up for the game and put in one of his best performances in a red shirt. Had one of those afternoons where he looked like to beat an opponent with ease. In the past he hasn’t made the most of decent positions by choosing the wrong option but today he looked a genuine threat. One moment where the ball went one way and he went the other stands out. Should have scored earlier in the game where he skipped past a feeble midfield challenge but could only find the keeper’s chest. Blackstock again created the goal for him, a pin-point curling effort around the keeper and into the bottom corner.
McCleary’s cameo showed the improvement he’s making under Davies’ tuition. Twice he skipped past their suffering left back and produced crosses that should have been converted. Finally we got reward for his endeavour. He won the ball in midfield, exchanged passes with Cohen and then saw his low shot palmed out for Adebola to add the final punishment.
The quality of MOTM Earnshaw’s three finishes speak for themselves. It’s taken a while for him to get started this season but he looked as sharp as ever right from the opening stages. Too often in a red shirt he’s barely contributed to games away from goal but today was a different story with his work-rate when they were in possession. First, Gunter’s through ball, a neat dummy and finish from Blackstock’s return pass. Next, instant control and chip from Cohen’s shot. Finally, he intercepted a short pass, turned their defence inside and out before a neat chip into the top corner.
Blackstock looked disappointed to be taken off without scoring but more than did enough with his link-up play with Earnshaw. One half volley well saved by the keeper and another header cleared off the line were the closest he came. After the relatively disappointing performances from McGoldrick and others this season, we’ve found our number one pairing for the coming weeks now.
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