Nottingham Forest 3-0 Bolton: Jamie Ward shines in Forest win
By PA Sport
Last Updated: 16/01/16 6:49pm
Jamie Ward was the star of the show as Dougie Freedman's Nottingham Forest defeated his former club Bolton 3-0 at the City Ground to extend Neil Lennon's away-day woes.
Ward set up two goals and scored the third himself as Forest extended 10-man Bolton's search for a Sky Bet Championship away win.
The forward was brought down by Ben Amos, with the goalkeeper collecting a red card and giving Nelson Oliveira the opportunity to put the home side ahead in the 12th minute.
Four minutes later Ward crossed for Oliver Burke to power home a header and, after being denied repeatedly as he went in search of a goal of his own, Ward finally found the net himself in the 83rd minute.
The result left Bolton rooted to the foot of the table, having collected only three points away from home all season while Forest stretched their unbeaten run to 11 games.
Forest had made the brighter start, with Ward seeing a shot charged down inside the box and Robert Tesche firing wide at the near post, after a corner had only been partially cleared.
And, by the 16th minute, the home side looked to be comfortably in control, having amassed a two-goal lead and seen Bolton reduced to 10 men.
The first key moment came as Ward raced clear of the visitors' defence and, while his first touch looked a little too strong, he was able to beat the onrushing Ben Amos to the ball and prod it beyond the 'keeper, who left referee Eddie Ilderton with little choice but to flash a red card in his direction after clumsily felling the Forest man.
It was Oliveira who grabbed the ball, before lashing a low penalty to substitute 'keeper Paul Rachubka's right, after he had replaced Josh Vela for the visitors.
Within four minutes, Forest had doubled their advantage, with Ward again the catalyst, this time as he found the space to deliver a precise cross from the left, picking out the run of teenager Burke who headed confidently home with a powerful, downward effort from a few yards out.
Rachubka had conceded twice in four minutes after coming on, but Dorus de Vries also had to be alert at the other end, looking on slightly nervously as a crisp strike from Wellington Silva flew a few feet over the bar.
Ward continued to shine, as he produced a darting run and clever cut back, but Osborn's shot rolled narrowly wide.
The former Derby man then forced a superb save from Rachubka with a superb volley - and then saw a confident, spectacular 30-yard drive bounce away off the bar.
Ward's impressive display continued after the break, as he flashed a shot across goal and wide. He then planted a header narrowly wide, as his search for a second goal for the club continued.
When Ward did get a low shot on target in the 80th minute, Rachubka brilliantly pushed the ball around the foot of the post, diving low to his left.
But, with seven minutes left to play Ward finally found the net, firing powerfully home off the underside of the bar, after Osborn had slipped him in.