Fulham 1-2 Nottingham Forest: Lewis Grabban double sinks Cottagers
Report and highlights from the Sky Bet Championship clash at Craven Cottage
Last Updated: 25/08/19 9:35pm
Two goals by Lewis Grabban saw Nottingham Forest defeat Fulham 2-1 in the Sky Bet Championship at Craven Cottage.
The forward netted twice before Aleksandar Mitrovic got what turned out to be a consolation goal for the home side.
The visitors started brightly, and they went ahead after just four minutes. Jack Robinson took the ball on the left flank and sent his delivery into the box for Grabban to connect first time past Marcus Bettinelli.
Grabban shot wide after 17 minutes as Forest looked for a second but Fulham started to get a foothold into the contest.
Joe Bryan fired to the left of the goal after 25 minutes, while Brice Samba held onto a 34th-minute effort by Mitrovic.
Despite their pressure, the hosts were unable to properly trouble the Forest goal. At the other end, Bettinelli denied Grabban a second goal just before the interval with a block.
Bobby Reid replaced Stefan Johansen for the hosts at half-time, although the first effort after the break fell to Anthony Knockaert, whose tame effort was held by Samba.
Knockaert was matched again by the Forest keeper after 53 minutes when his header was tipped away at full strength.
Although Forest were on the back foot, they managed to double their advantage just after the hour mark.
Grabban picked up a loose ball outside the area and was able to take advantage of some slack defending to fire home.
Samba was called into action again after 69 minutes with a great reaction save, after a shot by Steven Sessegnon was deflected off a defender.
Albert Adomah, who scored against Charlton in the week, came on for the returning Joe Lolley, while Fulham replaced Sessegnon with Aboubakar Kamara.
The home side put themselves back in contention with a goal on 84 minutes, after Mitrovic put his effort to the left of Samba.
The goal rejuvenated both the home crowd and the team who showed a burst of energy in the sweltering conditions at Craven Cottage.
Mitrovic missed out on a second just before the end when he was unable to glance his header on target.
Referee Peter Bankes played eight minutes of additional time and the home side continued to lay siege to the Forest goal.
Despite penning the visitors back in their own half they were unable to overcome a resolute Forest who left west London with the win.
Scott Parker: "I felt we controlled the game, we were in control - we started slowly. I was disappointed at the way we started the game. When they scored early, it put us on the back foot. Saying that after that we looked a real threat.
"I always felt comfortable in the way we were playing, certainly in possession. I felt like we played pretty well. I include the second half, the second goal comes from a mistake by us, which is one of those things. I take responsibility for that, that is the way I want us to play and sometimes that can happen."
Sabri Lamouchi: "My feeling tonight is happy because it's a great result. A fantastic performance by the team. They respect the plan, they play compact. We started in the right way, we disturbed them a lot and we fight until the end. With a lot of minutes more, with four or five attackers, it was just defending.
"It was not easy because they played very wide, with Ivan Cavaleiro one side and Anthony Knockaert on the other, with Aboubakar Kamara and Mitrovic in the middle. They did a great, great job, and maybe with luck sometimes we defended very well. I think they deserve this victory, for the spirit, for the plan, for the character, for the style, for the goals."