Nottingham Forest 1-1 West Brom: Matt Phillips nicks late point for Baggies
By Simeon Gholam
Last Updated: 08/08/18 7:20am
Matt Phillips nicked a late point for West Brom as they drew 1-1 with Nottingham Forest in a frantic Sky Bet Championship encounter at the City Ground.
Adlene Guedioura's long-range drive just before the hour mark appeared to have Forest heading for a first win of the season, but Phillips' stunning effort in the 87th minute earned a point for Darren Moore's side.
Forest would have been disappointed after dominating most of the game and nearly doubling their lead from Guedioura's incredible 60-yard effort, but both sides had great chances to win in an end-to-end finale on Tuesday night.
Jay Rodriguez started for West Brom despite speculation linking him with a move away, while Dwight Gayle began on the bench following his loan switch from Newcastle. Lewis Grabban was handed his first start for Nottingham Forest as one of four changes made by Aitor Karanka.
Nottingham Forest were in charge for most of the first half and created the better of the chances, but couldn't find the breakthrough against a disjointed West Brom.
The home side continued to dominate and they finally found their breakthrough after 59 minutes. West Brom didn't look in too much danger when Guedioura picked up the ball 30 yards from goal, but he took a touch forward before unleashing a fierce low drive that clipped the studs of Kyle Bartley before flying into the bottom corner.
It was a great finish but Guedioura nearly scored an early contender for the goal of the season in the 81st minute when he escaped his own 18-yard box following a West Brom corner before attempting to beat Sam Johnstone from 60 yards, and it was heading in before the goalkeeper scrambled back to tip it wide.
That moment sparked a frantic finale at the City Ground. Less than a minute later Dwight Gayle, making his debut following his loan switch from Newcastle, had a great chance to score but could only hit the post with his sliced effort across goal.
Nottingham Forest: Pantilimon (7), Darikwa (6), Figueiredo (6), Fox (6), Osborn (6), Colback (7), Guedioura (9), Dias (7), Carvalho (7), Lolley (6), Grabban (6)
Subs: Soudani (n/a), Goncalves (n/a)
West Brom: Johnstone (7), Adarabioyo (6), Hegazi (6), Bartley (6), Gibbs (7), Livermore (6), Brunt (6), Barnes (6), Phillips (7), Morrison (5), Rodriguez (6)
Subs: Robson-Kanu (n/a), Gayle (n/a)
Man of the match: Adlene Guedioura
Five minutes later, though, the Baggies would equalise as a Kieran Gibbs cross found its way to Phillips, who leathered the ball with the outside of his right boot right into the top corner.
West Brom then nearly nicked the game a minute later as Phillips' ambitious attempt from the angle hit the bar, before Harvey Barnes rattled the woodwork again seconds later and then Gayle could only head into the hands of Costel Pantilimon from close range.
Forest then went up the other end to try and find a winner of their own, but Joe Lolley's effort was deflected just wide before Lewis Grabban had his effort cleared off the line from the resulting corner.
Man of the match - Adlene Guedioura
If ever one man didn't deserve to not be on the winning side, it was Guedioura for Forest. His passing pulled West Brom's defence all over the place for most of the game, he scored an excellent goal and nearly netted another for the ages with his effort from long range.
Aitor Karanka: "We should have won the game. We played really good football against a really good team. We had chances to score [a second] but I told them at the beginning of the game that one mistake would penalise us.
"If we play the same way in the future we'll win many more games, but it's difficult to be pleased when you've done everything on the pitch."
Darren Moore: "It was a really tough game tonight. We came here to get a result and I thought we were capable of that. Obviously we had to change things up once [they scored] but then I think you've seen us all out to try and get the win, and we nearly did that at the end.
"If you don't win then you don't want to lose, and it was a valuable point."
Both sides are back in Sky Bet Championship action at 3pm on Saturday. Nottingham Forest are back at home against Reading and West Brom head to Norwich.