Blues pegged back by Forest
Birmingham's wait for a win continues after they were held to a 1-1 draw at Nottingham Forest.
Last Updated: 08/11/08 5:22pm
Birmingham City's wait for a win continues after the promotion hopefuls were held to a 1-1 draw at Nottingham Forest.
James McFadden had given Blues an early lead at the City Ground as the visitors sought to recover from back-to-back defeats.
But Forest rescued a point from the game in the 52nd minute when James Perch reacted the sharpest to reach a loose ball.
McFadden's goal came from a dubious free-kick, awarded by referee Phil Dowd when Sebastian Larsson stooped to earn a call of high foot.
Lee Carsley's low ball into the area was flicked on by Marcus Bent to McFadden, who saw his first shot blocked but then tucked the ball under Lee Camp from a tight angle.
Forest boss Colin Calderwood made six changes from the team that earned a point in last week's clash with local rivals Derby, and it showed as moves broke down thanks to mis-placed passes in the final third.
With four minutes left before the break, Maik Taylor was seriously tested for the first time as he saved Joe Garner's header at his left-hand post.
It would be from a set-piece that Forest equalised only six minutes after the re-start.
Luke Chambers' close-range header was blocked by Taylor, but Perch launched himself at the rebound to head home from a yard out.
Birmingham sought to respond quickly but Carsley's powerful free-kick was saved by Camp after a deflection robbed it of some power.
Instead, it was Forest who went close to scoring again as Garner's ball found the run of Nathan Tyson and his low shot across goal was well saved by Taylor.
Moments later, Matt Thornhill raced into the area to meet Tyson's cross but could not keep the ball down as he shot from six yards out.
Forest's tails were up and young full-back Joe Heath then tried his luck with a 20-yard half-volley, which was held by Taylor.
Cameron Jerome came on for Birmingham in the 58th minute but wasted his first chance as he failed to get any power on his shot after Camp spilled a cross.
Bent should have hit the target in the 70th minute as he rose highest to meet Nigel Quashie's cross, but his header went over the bar.
Tyson then wasted an even better chance for Forest as Chris Cohen flicked on a long free-kick into his path but the pacey striker poked the ball wide of the right-hand post.
It was end-to-end stuff as Forest launched a quick counter-attack with substitute Garath McCleary running the length of the field before playing in Tyson.
The striker fell in the area but while several Forest players were appealing for the penalty, Garner picked the ball up to race in on goal, only to fire straight at Taylor as his angle narrowed.
With time running out, Tyson raced into the area once more but Larsson got in a critical last-ditch challenge as he went to pull the trigger.