Match report: Nottingham Forest make it four home wins on the bounce against MK Dons


Nottingham Forest made it four successive home wins with a 2-1 victory over MK Dons to keep their play-off dreams alive.

Forest took command of the fixture with goals from man-of-the-match Nelson Castro Oliveira and Ryan Mendes inside the opening 16 minutes.

MK Dons set up a grandstand finish when Josh Murphy fired past De Vries with 10 mins to give his relegation-threatened side new hope.

The goal came a minute after Dorus De Vries had superbly saved Nicky Maynard’s spot kick.

But Forest mounted a determined, if somewhat nervy, rearguard action to claim all three points.

The impressive win also stretches Forest’s unbeaten streak to five matches as they continue to build up momentum

Forest got off to the perfect start when Nelson Castro Oliveira beat his man and curled a beautiful strike past David Martin to put the home side ahead after 67 seconds.

Ryan Mendes nearly made it 2-0 on 12 minutes when he cracked a fierce low shot inches wide of Martin’s left post.

But Mendes did double Forest’s lead when he poked home Daniel Pinillos’s cross after indecisive goalkeeping from Martin on 16 minutes.

It should have been 3-0 a moment later when Castro Oliveira broke the offside trap only to fire wide.

The lively Mendes caused further problems on 33 minutes when he curled an effort just over after good work by Chris O’Grady.

Dean Bowditch saw a great chance to get MK Dons back into the match go begging on 56 minutes when his fierce shot cannoned off the legs of Dorus De Vries.

Martin the pulled off the save of the match to turn Henri Lansbury’s free-kick away on 61 minutes and keep MK Dons’ hopes alive.

Oliveira cracked a 35 yard effort against the post five minutes later as Forest looked for a killer third.

MK Dons thought they had got back into the game when Josh Murphy was fouled in the box on 79 minutes.

But De Vries dived low to his right to superbly save Nicky Maynard’s spot-kick.

It proved to be a hollow save as the visitors set up a roaring finish when Murphy hammered past De Vries after a great one-two with Dean Lewington with 10 minutes to go.

Nottingham Forest 2 (Castro Oliveira 2, Mendes 16)

MK Dons 1 (Murphy 80)

Referee: Simon Hooper 7/10

Attendance: 19,975

Match rating 4/5

Star man: Nelson Castro Oliveira, Nottingham Forest striker.

Nottingham Forest: (4-4-2) De Vries 6, Lichaj 6, Mills 7, Mancienne 7, Pinillos 7, Mendes 8, Lansbury 6, Vaughan 6, Osborn 7, Castro Oliveira 8, O’Grady 5.

Subs used: Hobbs 70 6 (Pinillos); Ward 80 5 (Mendes); Trotter 84 n/a (Oliveira).

Subs not used: Evtimov, Williams, Blackstock, Tesche

MK Dons (4-2-3-1): Martin 5; Spence 5, McFadzean 6, Kay 6, Lewington 6, Potter 5, Carruthers 7, Hall 7, Reeves 6, Bowditch 6. Maynard 6.

Subs used: Murphy 63 7 (Reeves); Baker 76 6 (Spence); Gallagher 76 6 (Bowditch)

Subs not used: Cropper, Hodson, Poyet, Baker, Powell.