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October 27 2020 8.34am

Nottm Forest 2 - 1 Palace

Sat Feb 8 2003 - League

Suffering from a hangover after the victory against Liverpool in midweek, Crystal Palace were beaten 2-1 at Nottingham Forest.

Forest took an early lead after four minutes through Michael Dawson. Jim Brennan's corner was flicked into the penalty box at the byline by John Thompson and the ball fell to Dawson in the box who shot through the crowd to score.

Match Stats

Ground: City Ground (Attendance: 26012)

Nottm Forest: Ward, Brennan, Dawson, Hjelde, Louis-Jean, Scimeca, Thompson, Williams, Harewood, Johnson, Reid (Doig, 79)

Subs not used: Roche, Bopp, Jess, Westcarr

Bookings: Dawson, Louis-Jean

Goals: Dawson 4, Harewood 59

Palace: Berthelin, Mullins, Popovic (Akinbiyi, 73), Powell, Symons (Thomson, 72), Butterfield, Derry, Adebola, Freedman (Black, 57), Johnson, Gray

Subs not used: Kolinko, Granville

Goals: Johnson 75 (pen)

Referee: G Poll (Tring)

Darren Powell nearly gave Forest a goal when he sliced a clearance over the bar and on 25 minutes Tony Popovic headed inches past his own goal from Riccardo Scimeca's free-kick.

Down the other end, Popovic nodded Danny Buttefield's free-kick to Shaun Derry whose header was tipped onto the crossbar by Darren Ward.

Dele Adebola had a 60-yard run, but the chasing Mathieu Louis-Jean managed to get a slight touch to force Adebola to fire wide.

On 59 minutes, Marlon Harewood doubled Forest's advantage with a good goal.

He nutmegged Popovic by the touchline and ran into the penalty box, past Kit Symons and unleashed a fierce shot which went through Cedric Berthelin's near post and into the net.

Palace got a consolation with 15 minutes remaining after Dawson's rash challenge on Andy Johnson in the box. Johnson picked himself up to score from the spot.

Post match comments:

Trevor Francis said: "I think Dawson is a fine young prospect with a big future ahead of him but I would rather have seen him in the bath. "I rate Graham Poll as the best referee in the country but he didnít help our cause in not sending the player off.

I rate Graham Poll as the best referee in the country but he didnít help our cause in not sending Dawson off
Trevor Francis

"He had already been booked and I couldnít see whether he was the last defender or not - but he clearly brought Andrew [Johnson] down and I would have thought that was a yellow card offence as well.

"With 15 minutes to go it would have made a lot of difference to us to be playing against ten men in the final stages. We put forwards on and certainly caused some panic in their ranks and almost got the equaliser."

Francis added: "It has been a tough week for my squad with away matches against Leicester, Liverpool and Nottingham Forest.

"It was a real piece of history for us last Wednesday night but our points return over recent weeks has not been good enough.

"My side have committed a lot physically this week but have also had a lot taken out of us mentally. I have not really known a week like it as a Nationwide League club."

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