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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

1-0
20 February 2021 Venue The City Ground Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - Championship

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Match Previews

Preview: Nottingham Forest v Rovers

A look ahead to this afternoon's clash with Chris Hughton's Reds

20 February 2021

Rovers return to action this afternoon with a trip to Nottingham Forest on the agenda for Tony Mowbray's men.

Having suffered defeat in their last two outings away from home, Rovers will be aiming for better fortunes at The City Ground today.

Mowbray, whose side will be eager for revenge following the home defeat to today's opponents back in November, won't be able to welcome back any fresh faces for the game.

Bradley Johnson is still having issues with his hamstring, whilst Tom Trybull, Lewis Holtby and Daniel Ayala remain a little way off a return to match action.

Joe Rankin-Costello, who featured for 45 minutes in the Under-23s' excellent win over West Ham United on Friday, also won't play.

But former Forest man Ben Brereton could be in line for a start having appeared off the bench in the last two matches.

As for today's hosts, Ryan Yates and Luke Freeman are both in contention to feature against Rovers.

Yates has been sidelined through injury since the home defeat against Middlesbrough last month, whilst Freeman missed the midweek trip to Swansea City due to personal reasons.

And whilst the pair have provided a boost to Hughton, the Forest boss remains without Sammy Ameobi and Samba Sow.

Joe Lolley is expected to play a part, and, having scored the winner the last time the two sides met, the 28-year-old will need to be watched

Lolley also has plenty of previous against us with four goals in the six games he's featured against Rovers in his career.

And Hughton says he's preparing his side for a tricky battle against Mowbray's men on home turf.

“It will be as tough a game as any in this division," the Reds chief told the official Nottingham Forest website.

"What Rovers have had is a difficult period after starting the season very well.

"They are a very gifted team, they have a lot of ability in the side and in particular in the offensive areas with some really good options.

"It is another tough game that we will have to put in a level of performance to win.”

A live video match pass is only £10 for our contest against Hughton's side today.

If you'd like to purchase your match pass, please click here.

Kick-off against the Reds is at 3pm later on this afternoon.

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Match Reports

Report: Nottingham Forest 1-0 Rovers

Alex Mighten's deflected effort is enough to earn the points for the hosts

20 February 2021

A deflected strike from Alex Mighten was the difference as Rovers suffered defeat against Nottingham Forest at The City Ground.

Rovers did have their chances after the match-winning moment with Armstrong crashing a shot against the post and then seeing a second-half penalty beaten away by Brice Samba.

Mighten's attempt, which deflected off the boot of Lewis Travis, deceived Thomas Kaminski and flew into the back of the net midway through the first 45 minutes.

Rovers improved after the break and worked some opportunities but couldn't find a way past Samba and earn what would have been a deserved point on the road.

The boss made five changes to his starting XI with recalls handed to Ryan Nyambe, Harvey Elliott, Amari'i Bell, Jacob Davenport and ex-Forest man Ben Brereton in the East Midlands.

A lightning start saw the first chance of the game fall the way of the returning Brereton, but his header was tame and comfortable for Forest's Congolese goalkeeper to claim.

The same player tried his luck with a curling effort soon after, but Samba simply shifted to his left to grab the goal-bound effort which was hit from outside the area.

Forest eventually made a move forward and Rovers were grateful for Nyambe, who covered brilliantly to head Anthony Knockaert's curling effort off the line after the French flanker left both Davenport and Jarrad Branthwaite on the floor.

However, just as it looked like Rovers were looking fine, the hosts scored a fortuitous opener midway through the first half.

A high ball into the box was headed away, but well kindly for Mighten, who took a touch and unleashed a strike that took a wicked deflection off Travis before finding the back of the net.

It was cruel on Rovers, but things could have got worse soon after when Murray worked a yard but lashed just wide of the target from a tough angle.

Rovers went in search of a response but Travis' effort was straight down the throat of Samba after fine work down the left involving Bell and Elliott.

There was just a minute of the half remaining when Tobias Figueiredo's glancing header cracked the upright before Rovers worked their best opportunity of the game at the other end through Armstrong.

The skipper for the day turned Figueiredo inside-out before unleashing a thumping strike that looked destined for the top corner. The attempt beat Samba but it thundered against the post and bounced away to leave Rovers cursing their luck as they went into the break behind.

A half-time alteration saw Dack replace Sam Gallagher as Rovers readjusted things and went with a 4-2-3-1 formation with the talisman just behind Armstrong.

Dack's influence was growing into the half and he was involved just after the hour, which ended with Armstrong touching, swiveling and then hitting wide of Samba's post.

Forest hit the post with 20 minutes remaining as Cyrus Christie ventured forward and saw his low shot hit the base of Kaminski's right-hand post and substitute Lyle Taylor then hit wide.

Rovers had a great chance to level just a moment later when Samba brought down Nyambe in the box, but the goalkeeper redeemed himself by guessing right and saving Armstrong's well struck kick from the spot.

Rovers had plenty of possession and continued to probe for an equaliser, but Mowbray's men were left dejected and headed home with nothing to show for their efforts.

Nottingham Forest: Samba, Christie, Worrall (c), Figueiredo, Ribeiro, Garner, Cafu (Yates, 69), Knockaert (Blackett, 85), Krovinovic, Mighten (Freeman, 69), Murray (Taylor, 59).

Unused substitutes: Smith, Mbe Soh, Colback, Jenkinson, Lolley.

Goal: Mighten, 25.

Booked: Murray, 42, Garner, 68.

Rovers: Kaminski, Nyambe (Bennett, 90), Harwood-Bellis, Branthwaite, Bell, Travis (Rothwell, 85), Davenport (Buckley, 85), Elliott, Gallagher (Dack, 46), Brereton (Dolan, 64), Armstrong (c).

Unused substitutes: Pears, Downing, Douglas, Evans.

Booked: Harwood-Bellis, 2.

Referee: Keith Stroud.

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