Stalemate at Forest
By Paul Higham. Last Updated: 12/04/05 8:06pm
Sheffield United and Nottingham Forest played out a 1-1 draw at The City Ground which does neither of their causes any good.
Both club's were desperate for three points from Tuesday's clash to enhance their prospects at opposite ends of The Championship.
The Blades knew a win would take them into the play-off spots, while Gary Megson's side would be just three points from safety with a victory.
Neil Warnock's visitors dominated the match from start to finish, although Kris Commons gave the hosts the lead thoroughly against the run of play two minutes after half time.
Alan Quinn equalised for United but they could not turn possession into goals and in the end had to settle for a point.
Sheffield United dominated the opening 45 minutes, with a nervy Forest side showing exactly why they were languishing in the relegation zone.
Danny Webber had a great chance early on after a long throw was flicked on to the far post, but his header went over the bar from close range.
Webber started the game looking lively, and sprinted down the left hand side beyond the Forest back-line before having his shot saved by Paul Gerrard.
Jon Harley is never one to refuse an opportunity to shoot, and he fired in a well-hit volley on 18 minutes that Gerrard had to be at his best to get both hands to.
The Blades were camped out in the Forest half of the pitch, with the hosts hardly offering anything in possession.
Simon Francis volleyed a cross into the box from the right in one of the visitors' many attacks, but no-one could connect with the ball.
Warnock's side kept knocking on the door but were finding it hard to get past Gerrard, who sprawled at the feet of Andy Gray to deny him a shot at goal.
Forest were sent out early for the second half, and Megson's move paid off as they took an undeserved lead two minutes after the interval.
Mathieu Louis-Jean crossed from the right and Commons rose highest to head home and give the City Ground faithful some hope to cling to.
The goal failed to change the run of play, however, and United went right back on the front foot by commanding possession, but again struggled to carve out any clear-cut opportunities.
It was Quinn who finally found a way past Gerrard, as he arrived from the left hand side to slot home a cross from the right beyond the Forest keeper.
Forest had their backs to the wall in the closing stages, with Gray and Webber both being thwarted by the excellent Gerrard.
Both sides had to settle for a point in the end which does not do either of their causes any good.
Sky Bet Championship
|4||Queens Park Rangers||35||63|
|8||Brighton and Hove Albion||35||56|