A profitable week as the Reds get 7 of 9 points..

Ipswich Town – 0
Nottingham Forest – 1

I couldn’t resist the geeky Star Trek reference, I’m afraid!  As the Reds travelled to East Anglia I was confined to my laptop with an illicit but good quality stream of the match, which is always a bonus when you can’t make the trip in person.  A team selection out of left-field from Billy delivered the goods as Forest battled out a perhaps at least marginally fortunate win.

An own goal from Delaney – freshly into his ‘Mr Bump’ costume – was enough to seal the three points after great work from surprise inclusion David McGoldrick chased what looked like a lost cause, winning the ball and planting a cross into the centre where the unfortunate defender bundled it into his own net.

Once again the team defied prediction – with McGoldrick back from his knee injury and forgotten-man Joel Lynch straight back into the starting eleven which boasted five changes from our last game:

Gunter    Morgan    Chambers    Lynch
Cohen   Ramsey    Moussi
Tyson    McGoldrick    Anderson

There was a degree of flexibility in there, Moussi tended to be the more defensive of the central midfielders – Anderson and Tyson both were in numerous locations, with Ramsey and Cohen patrolling more centrally.  So the formation above probably denotes simply a moment in time rather than exactly how the players were planned to be lined up.

It was a scrappy start – the ball pinging around midfield and both sides very sloppy in possession.  Connor Wickham was responsible for the first moment of danger, getting clear of Luke Chambers on the right, but the number 4 recovered well and put in a last gap challenge to concede a corner rather than let the striker get his cross in.

A full twenty minutes had passed before either keeper had had their palms stinged.  Indeed, literally speaking it was a pretty routine gathering-up for Lee Camp to carry out after Jack Colback had a shot from twenty five yards with little or no bite to it.

Forest’s first chance was a decent inswinging cross-shot from Chris Cohen, it got the most marginal of touches from McGoldrick, and that was almost enough to evade the diving Fulop, who did well to make the save with his legs (as an aside, it would be ace if he was called Phillip – Phillip Fulop!… okay, I’ll get my coat)..

At the other end Wickham again was posing problems for us, the powerful striker popping a lovely cross straight onto Rory Fallon’s head – and he’s got to be disappointed to have headed it straight to Lee Camp.  Moments later Brown got away from Tyson and had a great opportunity to head in from eight yards out, bringing a cracking save from Lee Camp to deny him.

Moussi was denied by a good save from Fulop after good work by McGoldrick to chest the ball down to him, but a diving save by the big ‘keeper prevent it sneaking it in.  This lead into probably Forest’s best spell, although without any direct chances – indeed, it was punctuated by a drive from range by Leadbitter from a good 35 yards which was just over (although Camp had it covered).

Stoppage time in the first half saw Forest get the lead.  A long ball from Cohen had looked like a forlorn hope for David McGoldrick to be chasing – but the striker got hold of the ball by the line to the left of the goal and put it hopefully into the six yard box.  Delaney – who’d just been off to have his head bandaged – stumbled into the ball diverting it into his own goal.  The kind of thing that hardly ever happens for us on our travels!

As the second half got underway it should perhaps have been two – or at least Fulop should’ve had something to do.  Anderson got himself forward well and in space, he held it up to await reinforcements and found Cohen on the edge of the area, but the midfielder lacked composure with his finish and scooped it over.

Anderson again was posing a threat after being released by a nice pass from Ramsey, it looked like he was impeded but tried to toe-poke it goalward to no avail.  At the other end Tyson was alert enough to foil a quick break by Carlos Edwards before the home side could pose any further threat to the Reds goal.

David McGoldrick’s last action of a very productive game was to ping a shot to Fulop’s near post – the ‘keeper alert enough to keep it out.  Billy replaced him with Marcus Tudgay who’d been getting ready for some time.  A good return for Goldie, hardworking and industrious in a game where the service to him wasn’t the best!

Moments later Lynch planted the ball into Norris’ face from point blank range – the Ipswich midfielder was left needing treatment whilst it must have been a stretch too far for Lynch who was substituted for Kelvin Wilson.  Decent enough from Lynch, he lost possession a fair amount but defensively did well enough considering his lack of game time recently.

Kelv was quickly called into action as Ipswich piled pressure onto Forest, but the defence held firm and there was little by way of direct chances for the home side.  Forest however were creating opportunities on the break – Tudgay worked hard to win the ball on the right, his deep cross to Anderson gave him little option but to head it back centrally where he found Tyson who could only head wide with a tricky chance (he should’ve done better, though!).

At the other end Leadbitter did get a shot on target which Camp kept out, and Billy made his final change by putting Adebola on for Tyson.  The pressure was all by Ipswich, Camp punched a cross clear and Norris came close to chipping it over him and the defence into the goal (although Gunts looked to have it covered jumping under the bar just in case).

Further forward Leadbitter lost control of the ball after Tudgay brushed past him, it fell to Anderson who was greeted with a studs-up horror tackle from the Ipswich midfielder.  Luckily Ando got his feet off the ground to avoid a potential broken leg, amazingly the referee actually gave the red card.  Of course, he then restarted the game with an Ipswich freekick for Tudgay brushing against Leadbitter before the foul.

There had been five minutes of stoppage time announced already, so by the time the sending off and Anderson’s treatment time was factored in there was around seven minutes after the ninety to play, which basically consisted of Ipswich launching it forward hopefully and Forest defending it reasonably comfortably.

A very good three points, and now a long awaited break from league action for a while with Preston in the cup up next week, and then a full week off before Portsmouth come to town.  With any luck we’ll have some transfer or work-permit related news in that time, but personally I’m looking forward to a rest from the near daily updates to the site in the last few days!