Match report: Sheffield Wednesday 1 Nottingham Forest 0

Fernando Forestieri tries to put Owls on the front foot.
Fernando Forestieri tries to put Owls on the front foot.
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Fernando Forestieri was the hero as Sheffield Wednesday beat Nottingham Forest 1-0 to move within touching distance of the Championship play-offs.

The striker, one of four changes, grabbed his fourth goal in eight Owls starts since joining the Owls for £3m from Watford midway through the second half to seal their third successive victory. He rifled a right foot shot past Dimitar Evtimov, who will be disappointed he didn't keep it out.

Atdhe Nuhiu closes down Forest midfielder David Vaughan.

Atdhe Nuhiu closes down Forest midfielder David Vaughan.

Victory extends Wednesday's unbeaten run to 10 matches in all competitions and means they are one point adrift of the top six.

Following their Arsenal heroics, boss Carlos Carvalhal freshened up his starting line-up. He handed first-team recalls to Keiren Westwood, Jose Semedo, Atdhe Nuhiu and Forestieri, leaving out Joe Wildsmith, Sam Hutchinson, Jeremy Helan and Lucas Joao.

New arrival Gary Hooper, signed on loan from Norwich City just hours before their comprehensive victory over the Gunners, was named on the substitutes bench.

Chairman Dejphon Chansiri was applauded by three sides of the ground as he headed towards the directors box at the start of the contest.

It was very scrappy in the early skirmishes, with Owls struggling to break down a compact, well organised Forest defence. Forestieri tried his luck from distance but his low strike drifted harmlessly wide.

Forest, searching for their first win in seven matches, threatened on the counter attack, with Dextor Blackstock narrowly failing to connect with Chris Burke's dangerous centre.

Nelson Oliveira should have done better after a fine delivery by former Sheffield United forward Jamie Ward as Forest carried the greater threat early on.

But following a slow start, Wednesday improved and Ross Wallace's venomous cross turned shot flew over after some patient build up.

Northern Ireland international Ward curled a free kick straight at Keiren Westwood but Forest looked anything but a side on a poor run of form.

A sublime through ball by Barry Bannan in the 25th minute released Kieran Lee, whose control let him down as he allowed Evitmov to spread himself big and make the save. The Forest goalkeeper also denied Daniel Pudil on the follow up, palming the left-back's drive behind for a corner.

After failing to find the early breakthrough, Wednesday refused to panic and David Vaughan became the first player to be yellow carded after tripping Forestieri in a dangerous position.

Just after the half hour mark, Lee broke clear again before flicking a shot well wide of the post.


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Forest could have opened the scoring in the 37th minute after a quick counter attack only for Ward's header from Daniel Pinillos' peach of a cross to hit the outside of the post. Pinillos showed lovely footwork to create space on the left flank for himself, beating two Wednesday players in the process.

Jack Hunt, playing against one of his old clubs, forced Evtimov into a smart stop after a neat one two between him and Wallace.

Tempers flared in the 40th minute after Ward and Semedo squared up to each other. It was all a bit tetchy and Ward was cautioned for putting his hand on Semedo's face. Other officials might have shown Ward the red card but referee Jeremy Simpson was more lenient by only booking him.

Bannan, looking a little subdued after his outstanding performance in midweek, floated in a delightful cross which Nuhiu glanced over when he should have at least called Evtimov into action. All that came after the Scotland international had been cautioned for a cynical challenge on Liam Trotter.

For all their possession, Wednesday created few clear-cut scoring chances. Forestieri, switched to the left wing after Lucas Joao's introduction, combined effectively with Nuhiu before sending a rasping effort from distance into the stands.

It took a fine piece of defending by Daniel Pudil to halt a dangerous Forest attack following Forestieri's opener.

There was another flashpoint when Nelson Oliveria tangled with Pudil but Simpson, much to the home fans frustration, awarded a free kick to Forest and yellow carded Forestieri.

Joao could have doubled the Owls' advantage bu the Angolan-born player fired wide after great play by fellow substitute Jeremy Helan and Lee.

Hooper was introduced in the closing stages as Wednesday held on for maximum points and maintained their momentum.

Wednesday: Westwood; Hunt, Lees, Loovens, Pudil; Wallace, Semedo (Joao 56), Lee, Bannan; Forestieri (Helan 79), Nuhiu (Hooper 86). Substitutes: Wildsmith, Palmer, McGugan, Sasso.

Forest: Evtimov; Wilson, Mills(C), Hobbs (O'Grady 84), Pinillos; Vaughan, Trotter; Ward (Williams 79), C Burke (Osborn 59), Blackstock; Oliveira. Substitutes: Durrant, Lichaj, Grant, Walker.

Attendance: 22,465

Referee: Jeremy Simpson (Lancashire)

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