Royals fall to Forest
McGugan boosts Forest's survival bid
Last Updated: February 28, 2009 5:29pm
McGugan: Forest match-winner
Reading drew another blank as Nottingham Forest recorded a priceless 1-0 win at the Madejski Stadium.
Lewis McGugan's second-half strike proved to be enough to give Forest their first win in four games and boost their survival hopes.
Reading were once again made to pay for some wasteful finishing as they failed to find the net for a fourth consecutive game to ensure they missed out on the chance to climb into second spot.
Despite their goal drought in recent weeks Reading were not short of confidence in the opening exchanges.
Jimmy Kebe volleyed wide from 12 yards less than two minutes in and Brynjar Gunnarsson headed over the crossbar from close range.
Paul Anderson had Forest's first sight of goal but flashed a right-foot shot wide of Adam Federici's right-hand post.
Reading continued to ask questions of the Forest defence and Stephen Hunt's corner was volleyed over the bar by leading scorer Doyle after 15 minutes.
BlowForest then suffered a major blow on the half-hour mark when striker Nathan Tyson's afternoon ended prematurely due to injury.
Stephen Hunt then tried his luck from the edge of the penalty area but failed to test Paul Smith in the Forest goal.
The visitors' leading scorer Robert Earnshaw had an opportunity to give Forest the lead against the run of play seven minutes before the break, but fired over the bar.
Steve Coppell's side continued to dominate after the break but McGugan almost caught them out when the ball sat up for him 12 yards from goal only for the midfielder to volley over the bar.
And Forest came close once again after 57 minutes when Federici tipped Chris Cohen's measured strike around the post.
But Reading did not heed the warning signs and were behind three minutes later.
McGugan drove into the box and foxed Michael Duberry before drilling a clinical left-foot finish into the bottom-right corner of Federici's net.
Reading were dominating possession but struggled to break down a determined Forest defence as the visitors held out for three precious points in their bid to avoid an immediate return to League One.
Sat 28th Feb
Reading0 - 1N Forest
Swansea1 - 1Charlton
Southampton1 - 0Cardiff
Preston3 - 2Ipswich
Wolves0 - 1Plymouth
Bristol C0 - 0Blackpool
Barnsley2 - 1QPR
Norwich1 - 2Coventry
Watford2 - 0C Palace
Burnley2 - 4Sheff Wed
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