Ten Men Forest Earn Draw

Nottingham Forest 2-2 Stoke City (EFL Championship) 12.02.22

Nottingham Forest came back from brink of defeat to earn a valuable point with ten men as captain Joe Worrall ended up finishing the game in goal following Brice Samba’s red card.

It was a largely uneventful first half in comparison to the second, Stoke City hitting the bar early on with a looping effort by Wilmott outside the box which caught the wind and nearly caught out the rooted Samba for an opener.

On 25 minutes, Djed Spence and Zinckernagel combined for the right wing back to shoot powerfully at Bursik who was equal to the task, Johnson then failed to lift over the keeper on 36 after latching onto a long clearance by Samba before Garner had a shot deflected behind four minutes before the break.

Forest started the second half well, as they finished the first half in dominant form, and again went close when Zinckernagel whipped into Davis but Potteries goalkeeper Bursik beat him to it.

Stoke hit the woodwork again, on 53 when Lewis Baker’s free kick cannoned off the post, with Forest bringing on substitute Sam Surridge for a home league debut it was he who sent Max Lowe down the left wing before the Sheffield United loanee crossed into Brennan Johnson perfectly who put the Reds one up.

Philogene-Bidace then forced a top save down low by Brice Samba before a corner played in was flicked on to Josh Maja at the back post to prod home an equaliser unmarked for Stoke.

As the game looked to be heading for a draw, Brice Samba had an altercation with Stephen Fletcher with the former Sheffield Wednesday striker going down inside the box after what appeared to be a slap on his head. The Referee awarding a penalty and sending off Samba, with all the Forest substitutes already made by Steve Cooper, Joe Worrall took the gloves with his first task to face a Lewis Baker penalty, the former Chelsea midfielder placing home past the part-time keeper to give what looked an unlikely win for Stoke.

But Forest have a real togetherness at the moment and they never gave up. A James Garner free kick in the first minute of injury time crashing off the bar and eventually falling to Ryan Yates who nodded in from close range, off the bench to head home a leveller and give the Reds a share of the spoils in a real dramatic encounter.

Nottingham Forest: Samba, Worrall, Cook (Mighten 82), McKenna, Spence, Garner, Colback, Lowe, Zinckernagel (Yates 82), Johnson, Davis (Surridge 54).

Stoke City: Bursik, Wilmot, Jagielka, Harwood-Belis, Tymon, Baker, Allen, Powell (Thompson 79), Brown (Clucas 71), Maja (Fletcher 79), Philogene-Bidace.

Venue: City Ground (28,990)

*Main image @NFFC Ryan Yates celebrates his late equaliser.

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