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St. Mary's Stadium (ATT 26,580) 20th December 2008 - Kick off 15:00 Ref: I Williamson

Southampton Southampton vs Nottingham Forest N Forest

Forest chop down Saints

Morgan and Garner on target in away success

Last Updated: 20/12/08 5:49pm

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Garner: Crucial second

Garner: Crucial second

Improving Nottingham Forest have closed to within a point of Southampton after securing a priceless 2-0 success at St Mary's.

Once Wes Morgan broke the deadlock before half-time the visitors always looked good for the points.

Former Carlisle United striker Joe Garner added a second for Colin Calderwood's men on 75 minutes to wrap up the win and pile more pressure on Jan Poortvliet.

After a dour opening 15 minutes the game suddenly burst into life when both sides went close to breaking the deadlock.

First Paul Anderson thought he had scored when, from six yards out, he sent a low shot goalwards but somehow Saints goalkeeper Kelvin Davis deflected the ball wide with an outstretched leg.

Moments later it was the hosts who almost scored as a strong Andrew Surman shot rebounded off the post and out to safety.

Anderson, on loan from Liverpool, was denied again by Davis after 27 minutes. This time the winger sent a curling 20-yard shot towards the top corner which Davis brilliantly tipped over the bar.

Opening goal

But the reprieve did not last long as some slack marking allowed Morgan to head home from seven yards.

The visitors, buoyed by their opening goal on the stroke of half-time, began the second half much the brighter and could have added to their lead on a couple of occasions.

Garner had a decent chance when, after finding some space in the area, the former Carlisle striker header over when he should have hit the target.

Then Brendan Moloney had a chance with a header which he sent wide of the post.

Despite looking susceptible at the back Southampton played some nice football in the middle of the park, but they were restricted to long-range efforts with Jack Cork sending a shot over from 30 yards.

As the hosts pushed for an equaliser the game was put to bed 15 minutes from time as Garner showed great vision to chip Davis from 30 yards for his fourth goal of the season.

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Table

Sky Bet Championship

Sky Bet Championship
Pos Team P Pts
1 Leicester City 42 90
2 Burnley 42 83
3 Derby County 42 75
4 Queens Park Rangers 42 73
5 Wigan Athletic 41 67
6 Reading 42 64
7 Brighton and Hove Albion 42 64
8 Ipswich Town 42 64
9 Bournemouth 42 62
10 Blackburn Rovers 42 60
11 Nottingham Forest 42 59
12 Middlesbrough 42 58
13 Watford 41 57
14 Bolton Wanderers 42 54
15 Sheffield Wednesday 42 50
16 Leeds United 42 50
17 Huddersfield Town 42 46
18 Birmingham City 41 43
19 Doncaster Rovers 42 43
20 Blackpool 42 42
21 Charlton Athletic 41 41
22 Millwall 42 40
23 Barnsley 42 39
24 Yeovil Town 42 36

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