Rangers’ Winless Run at the City Ground Continues: Nottingham Forest (1) – QPR (0)

FA Cup 3rd Round

Team: Lumley, Onuoha, Hall, Hill (Perch), Angella, Mackie (Petrasso), Doughty, Luongo, Tozser, Gladwin (Chery), Emmanuel-Thomas

Subs Not Used: Brzozowski, Faurlin, Hoilett, Polter

Attendance: 14,197 (including 1,187 R’s fans)

We parked up near Notts County’s ground and eventually we were directed to a great pub, the Stratford Haven, which was situated near to the Cricket ground. Good food and superb ale.

Programmes had sold out by the time we arrived at the ground. We had expected wholesale team changes and we got them. There was plenty of support for young debutant Joe Lumley, who was guarding the goal in front of us for the first-half.

Much of the talk also concerned Rob Green’s situation and his contract clause. The official reason given for his non-appearance in the squad was that he was ill!!!

As the game got underway, the home side looked sharper and more purposeful and they scored after 24 minutes, with what was to be their only shot on target.

Forest countered at pace from the half-way line and Oliver Burke’s scuffed shot looked as if it was going wide, but Jamie Ward was quickly on hand to slide the ball home at the far post.

Rangers gradually improved after the break, with good movement and crisp passing. We all went up when Gabriele Angella’s powerful header was well saved just under the crossbar.

It must have been an emotional return for Michael Doughty, and for me, he was one of our standout players.

Tjaronn Chery did well when he came on, but what about Jay Emmanuel-Thomas? Switching and drifting periodically between the left-wing, right flank and where he should be, as a centre-forward. He also got an earful when he gave up the chase for a ball right in front of us.

Obviously very disappointed to exit another cup competition at the first hurdle, but a good turnout from over 1,000 of the faithful.

My thanks to Paul for the lift.

Steve Russell

Jamie Ward’s first-half strike was enough to give Nottingham Forest victory over QPR in an uninspiring all-Championship FA Cup third-round tie.

The impressive Oliver Burke teed up Forest’s deserved half-time lead when his run ended, with a mis-hit cross which was turned in by Ward.

QPR improved after half-time but were unable to create many opportunities. Gabriele Angella went close with a header but Forest held firm to ensure QPR remain winless at the City Ground. Their 31st attempt to break that record looked like failing from early on as Forest appeared sharper in midfield and more threatening in attack.

Teenager Burke was the game’s standout player, and his moment of class and fine burst forward from halfway led to Ward sliding in his first Forest goal on 24 minutes.

Rangers had the better of things on the resumption, but still struggled to create clear chances and earn a first win victory under new manager Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink in his seventh attempt.

Reds keeper Dorus de Vries did have to make a superb save to tip over Angella’s header. But Forest’s win was marred by an injury to Henri Lansbury. The midfielder had to be given oxygen and have his leg put in a brace after falling awkwardly soon after coming on as a second-half substitute.

Nottingham Forest boss Dougie Freedman: “We are pleased under the circumstances, because we played a few players who have not played in a long time, in Gary Gardner and Chris Cohen and Oliver Burke, who was starting only his third game.”

“It is very pleasing to be in the next round, which was our objective at the start of the day. Oliver has a lot of learning to do, he is a player with real potential – but he is growing into a dangerous player for us. He tired in the second-half, as did one or two others.”

“If we can keep him fresh and get him running at people, he is going to be a big asset for us.”

QPR manager Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink: “That was a poor first-half from us, but much better in the second-half. We have started to look a bit more like the team I want us to be.”

“The way we are going to get a win is through working together, believing together and being a team.”

“It is not to do with what we can or can’t achieve in the January transfer window, it is about putting it all together. I am seeing the signs here and there, in every game. But it has to come out now as one continuous performance.”

“Against Forest it was like night and day, that is how much we improved. It would be great to carry that forward into next week. We just need a break.”

BBC Sport