Nottingham Forest returned to the top of the Championship despite a sweet strike by Watford's Lewis McGugan denying his former side victory.

Andy Reid fired Forest in front after Marco Cassetti had given the ball away.

Henri Lansbury also struck a Watford post, but McGugan curled in a superb second-half free-kick to equalise.

McGugan and Sean Murray forced smart saves from Karl Darlow, and Watford's Ikechi Anya and Forest's Ishmael Miller came close in a frenetic finish.

Forest youth product McGugan, often criticised for his inconsistency during his seven years at the City Ground, only left the club for Watford this summer and has already reminded his old side what they are missing.

The 24-year-old left Darlow with no chance from a sweetly hit 20-yard free-kick - the first league goal Forest have conceded this season - and showed respect for his former employers by refusing to celebrate.

Forest should feel optimistic about a resolute performance that almost maintained their 100% winning record.

The quality of Watford's passing and Forest's defensive stubbornness suggests both will be in the reckoning for promotion come May.

McGugan magic

Lewis McGugan's superb free-kick equaliser against his former club was the first goal Nottingham Forest have conceded in the Championship this season and also ended the the division's only remaining 100% record

The Hornets were dedicated to playing the ball out from the back and that cost them an early goal. Cassetti misplaced a crossfield pass into the path of Reid, who fed Jamie Mackie before receiving it back inside the area and rifling into the top corner.

Cassetti would fail to learn from his mishap, gifting the ball once again to Reid, who released Lansbury for a shot that came back off Manuel Almunia's post.

Watford striker Troy Deeney planted an inviting header wide, but Forest looked impregnable in the first half, allowing Watford, and more specifically the impressive Diego Fabbrini and Almen Abdi, to retain possession on the edge of their area.

But the second period became an open encounter, with McGugan almost crowning his performance when forcing Darlow into a fine stop and substitute Murray hitting straight at the visiting keeper from 12 yards.

Greg Halford and Mackie were thwarted by Almunia on the break and the Spanish keeper touched Miller's effort on to a post.

Watford pushed for a winner with Anya coming closest when Darlow tipped his effort around the poat, but Forest's organised back four held firm, ensuring both sides remained undefeated.

Watford manager Gianfranco Zola:

Post-match: Watford boss Gianfranco Zola

"It's one of those games I'm sure the crowd enjoyed, but certainly not the managers.

"I think it was too open. It gives me a lot of points to coach and a lot of indications on how we can improve the team.

"We know we have to defend better than we are at the moment. I also know if we want to be an offensive team we can't be perfect at defending as well.

"I was about to substitute off McGugan before the goal. He looked tired. I left him on the pitch and he almost scored a second."

Nottingham Forest assistant manager David Kelly:

"What's that old saying about a good advertisement for the Championship? It was a good game.

"I'm really pleased with how we played and how we attacked. I'm very disappointed with the goal - we worked all week on set-plays and people being in certain positions in the wall.

"But it's a good point against one if the teams that are going to be up there challenging.

"We had enough chances to finish the game off well before they scored."

Live text and stats

 

Sunday, 25 August 2013

Championship

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Watford 1-1 Nott'm Forest FT
(HT 0-1)
  • McGugan 54
  • Reid 6

Watford

  • 01 Almunia
  • 04 Angella
  • 12 Doyley
  • 27 Cassetti
  • 10 McGugan (Murray 65)
  • 18 Pudil (Faraoni 78)
  • 21 Anya
  • 22 Abdi
  • 23 Iriney (Forestieri 78)
  • 09 Deeney
  • 20 Fabbrini yellow card

Substitutes

  • 30 Bond,
  • 02 Brown,
  • 07 Battocchio,
  • 16 Murray,
  • 19 Faraoni,
  • 11 Forestieri,
  • 15 Acuna

Nott'm Forest

  • 01 Darlow
  • 02 Lichaj yellow card
  • 08 Cohen yellow card
  • 22 Wilson yellow card
  • 25 Hobbs
  • 07 Guedioura
  • 10 Lansbury yellow card
  • 11 Reid
  • 28 Majewski (Paterson 72)
  • 12 Mackie (Miller 79 yellow card)
  • 15 Halford (Derbyshire 61)

Substitutes

  • 29 De Vries,
  • 03 Harding,
  • 05 Collins,
  • 17 Miller,
  • 21 Paterson,
  • 27 Derbyshire,
  • 31 Cox
Ref: LangfordAtt: 16,242
WATFORD
NOTT'M FOREST

Possession

  • Watford 52%
  • Nott'm Forest 48%

Attempts on target

  • Watford 7
  • Nott'm Forest 8

Attempts off target

  • Watford 12
  • Nott'm Forest 10

Corners

  • Watford 7
  • Nott'm Forest 4

Fouls

  • Watford 8
  • Nott'm Forest 20
  • Final Result
  • Full Time
  • 90:00+5:01 The referee signals the end of the game.
  • 90:00+4:28 Shot by Jamie Paterson missed to the right of the target.
  • 90:00+4:15 Clearance by Gabriele Angella.
  • 90:00+3:39 Diego Fabbrini takes a shot and went wide right of the net.
  • 90:00+3:20 Andy Reid manages to make a clearance.
  • 90:00+2:49 Almen Abdi takes the free kick.
  • 90:00+2:29 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Diego Fabbrini by Andy Reid.
  • 90:00+2:21 Clearance by Marco Cassetti.
  • 90:00+2:19 Free kick taken by Andy Reid.
  • 90:00+1:50 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Ishmael Miller by Gabriele Angella.
  • 90:00+1:19 Lloyd Doyley takes the free kick.
  • 90:00+1:15 Foul by Matt Derbyshire on Gabriele Angella, free kick awarded.
  • 90:00+0:28 Fernando Forestieri takes a shot and went wide of the right hand upright.
  • 90:00+0:25 Fernando Forestieri takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Adlene Guedioura gets a block in.
  • Correction - 89:53 Ishmael Miller takes a shot. Manuel Almunia turns it away with a finger tip save.
  • 89:53 Ishmael Miller takes the chance to get an effort at goal.
  • 89:44 Andy Reid manages to make a clearance.
  • 89:19 Chris Cohen manages to make a clearance.
  • 89:18 Marco Faraoni produces a cross.
  • 89:03 Clearance by Karl Darlow.
  • 88:45 Clearance by Gabriele Angella.
  • 88:06 Corner taken by Andy Reid from the left by-line.
  • 87:31 Ishmael Miller takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Blocked by Lloyd Doyley.
  • 87:20 Clearance by Henri Lansbury.
  • 87:16 Corner taken by Almen Abdi.
  • 86:51 Ikechi Anya takes a shot. A parry by Karl Darlow prevents the goal.
  • 86:35 Free kick taken by Sean Murray.
  • 86:25 Eric Lichaj goes into the referee's book.
  • 86:25 Booking
  • 86:03 Eric Lichaj concedes a free kick for a foul on Fernando Forestieri.
  • 85:39 Jamie Paterson manages to make a clearance.
  • 85:33 Marco Cassetti manages to make a clearance.
  • 84:46 Clearance by Jack Hobbs.
  • Correction - 84:44 Diego Fabbrini takes a weak shot and missed to the left of the net. Jack Hobbs makes a clearance.
  • 84:44 Shot by Diego Fabbrini.
  • 84:42 Almen Abdi decides to take the corner short.
  • 84:15 Chris Cohen manages to make a clearance.
  • 84:12 Centre by Sean Murray.
  • 83:16 Almen Abdi restarts play with the free kick.
  • 82:51 Kelvin Wilson is cautioned.
  • 82:51 Booking
  • 82:34 Free kick awarded for a foul by Kelvin Wilson on Fernando Forestieri.
  • 82:15 Clearance by Ishmael Miller.
  • 81:46 Marco Cassetti restarts play with the free kick.
  • 81:30 Ishmael Miller is cautioned.
  • 81:30 Booking
  • 81:14 Foul by Ishmael Miller on Sean Murray, free kick awarded.
  • 80:28 Shot by Lloyd Doyley missed to the left of the net.
  • 80:15 Free kick taken by Manuel Almunia.
  • 80:06 The referee blows for offside against Ishmael Miller.
  • 79:58 Almen Abdi makes a clearance.
  • 79:49 Troy Deeney is cautioned by the ref for unsporting behaviour.
  • 79:47 Almen Abdi has an effort at goal. Henri Lansbury gets a block in.
  • 79:39 Clearance by Fernando Forestieri.
  • 79:34 Clearance by Chris Cohen.
  • 79:13 Free kick taken by Karl Darlow.
  • Correction - 78:49 Troy Deeney receives a caution.
  • 78:44 Troy Deeney gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Henri Lansbury.
  • Correction - 78:37 Free kick taken by Almen Abdi.
  • 78:37 Almen Abdi restarts play with the free kick.
  • 78:20 Substitution Ishmael Miller replaces Jamie Mackie.
  • 77:55 Substitution Marco Faraoni on for Daniel Pudil.
  • 77:41 Substitution Santos Iriney leaves the field to be replaced by Fernando Forestieri.
  • 76:58 Jack Hobbs concedes a free kick for a foul on Diego Fabbrini.
  • 76:51 Adlene Guedioura makes a clearance.
  • 76:33 Header at goal by Jamie Mackie. Manuel Almunia parries the effort to safety.
  • 76:31 Andy Reid produces a cross.
  • 75:08 Clearance made by Lloyd Doyley.
  • 74:43 Free kick taken by Manuel Almunia.
  • 74:21 The offside flag is raised against Jamie Mackie.
  • 74:10 Karl Darlow takes the free kick.
  • 73:37 Marco Cassetti challenges Jamie Paterson unfairly and gives away a free kick.
  • 73:34 Jack Hobbs makes a clearance.
  • 73:32 Kelvin Wilson makes a clearance.
  • 73:29 Jamie Paterson manages to make a clearance.
  • 73:29 Clearance made by Almen Abdi.
  • 73:25 Kelvin Wilson manages to make a clearance.
  • 73:23 Clearance made by Henri Lansbury.
  • 73:19 Corner taken by Almen Abdi from the left by-line.
  • 73:19 Corner taken by Almen Abdi.
  • 72:46 Clearance made by Eric Lichaj.
  • 72:13 Clearance made by Ikechi Anya.
  • Correction - 71:59 Jamie Mackie takes a shot. Manuel Almunia parries the effort to safety.
  • 71:59 Jamie Mackie has an effort at goal. Manuel Almunia parries the effort to safety.
  • 71:30 Substitution Jamie Paterson comes on in place of Radoslaw Majewski.
  • 70:47 Jack Hobbs takes the free kick.
  • 70:21 The referee cautions Diego Fabbrini for unsporting behaviour.
  • 70:21 Booking
  • 70:09 Unfair challenge on Andy Reid by Diego Fabbrini results in a free kick.
  • 70:01 Clearance by Jack Hobbs.
  • 69:58 Almen Abdi crosses the ball in from the free kick.
  • 69:35 Henri Lansbury receives a caution for dissent.
  • 69:35 Booking
  • 69:30 Eric Lichaj goes into the book for unsporting behaviour.
  • 69:22 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Daniel Pudil by Eric Lichaj.
  • 68:37 Free kick taken by Sean Murray.
  • 68:13 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Almen Abdi by Adlene Guedioura.
  • 67:40 Radoslaw Majewski has an effort at goal. Blocked by Lloyd Doyley.
  • 67:16 Clearance by Henri Lansbury.
  • 67:14 Sean Murray takes a shot. Parried by Karl Darlow back into danger.
  • 67:11 The ball is swung over by Daniel Pudil.
  • 66:31 Eric Lichaj delivers the ball.
  • 66:23 Clearance made by Matt Derbyshire.
  • 65:57 Gabriele Angella makes a clearance.
  • 65:55 The ball is crossed by Andy Reid.
  • 65:03 Free kick taken by Manuel Almunia.
  • 64:35 Henri Lansbury challenges Gabriele Angella unfairly and gives away a free kick.
  • 64:04 Substitution (Watford) makes a substitution, with Sean Murray coming on for Lewis McGugan.
  • 62:48 Radoslaw Majewski makes a clearance.
  • 62:45 Radoslaw Majewski makes a clearance.
  • 62:12 Clearance by Daniel Pudil.
  • 62:09 Radoslaw Majewski sends in a cross.
  • 62:08 Short corner taken by Andy Reid.
  • 60:25 Substitution Greg Halford goes off and Matt Derbyshire comes on.
  • 59:42 Henri Lansbury sends in a cross.
  • 59:22 Lewis McGugan takes a shot. Karl Darlow safely holds on.
  • 58:47 Jack Hobbs makes a clearance.
  • 58:14 Clearance made by Adlene Guedioura.
  • 58:09 Manuel Almunia restarts play with the free kick.
  • 57:50 Booking
  • 57:50 Chris Cohen is cautioned by the ref for unsporting behaviour.
  • 57:36 Chris Cohen concedes a free kick for a foul on Ikechi Anya.
  • 57:34 Clearance made by Almen Abdi.
  • 57:08 Lloyd Doyley manages to make a clearance.
  • 56:59 Clearance by Andy Reid.
  • 56:49 Chris Cohen manages to make a clearance.
  • 56:47 Ikechi Anya crosses the ball.
  • 56:40 Jack Hobbs makes a clearance.
  • 56:36 Corner taken by Almen Abdi from the right by-line.
  • 56:16 Shot by Lewis McGugan. Karl Darlow parries the effort to safety.
  • 54:46 Clearance made by Henri Lansbury.
  • 53:44 GOAL - Lewis McGuganWatford 1 - 1 Nott'm Forest Lewis McGugan hits the back of the net with a direct shot from the free kick. Watford 1-1 Nottm Forest.
  • 52:57 Adlene Guedioura gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Diego Fabbrini.
  • 52:23 Shot by Greg Halford. Manuel Almunia parries the effort to safety.
  • 51:03 Clearance made by Lloyd Doyley.
  • 50:40 Ikechi Anya takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Karl Darlow catches the ball.
  • 49:53 Radoslaw Majewski takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Manuel Almunia safely holds on.
  • 49:10 Eric Lichaj sends in a cross.
  • 49:02 Gabriele Angella manages to make a clearance.
  • 49:00 Centre by Adlene Guedioura.
  • 48:52 Adlene Guedioura makes a clearance.
  • 48:32 Jamie Mackie takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Blocked by Marco Cassetti.
  • 47:46 The ball is crossed by Daniel Pudil.
  • 47:34 Gabriele Angella takes the free kick.
  • 46:42 Adlene Guedioura gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Diego Fabbrini.
  • 46:37 Chris Cohen manages to make a clearance.
  • 46:15 Andy Reid takes a shot and goes harmlessly over the bar.
  • 46:12 The ball is delivered by Jamie Mackie.
  • 45:01 The referee starts the second half.
  • Half Time
  • 45:00+1:12 The players leave the pitch at half time.
  • 45:00+0:58 Jamie Mackie manages to make a clearance.
  • Correction - 45:00+0:52 A cross is delivered by Adlene Guedioura.
  • 45:00+0:52 The ball is sent over by Adlene Guedioura.
  • 45:00+0:39 Clearance by Ikechi Anya.
  • 45:00+0:33 Karl Darlow restarts play with the free kick.
  • Correction - 45:00+0:01 Diego Fabbrini challenges Andy Reid unfairly and gives away a free kick.
  • 45:00+0:01 Andy Reid fouled by Diego Fabbrini, the ref awards a free kick.
  • 43:46 Ikechi Anya takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Blocked by Chris Cohen.
  • 43:17 Andy Reid delivers the ball.
  • 42:58 Kelvin Wilson manages to make a clearance.
  • 42:29 Radoslaw Majewski takes a shot and went wide right of the target.
  • 41:33 Header at goal by Troy Deeney goes right of the post.
  • 41:31 The ball is delivered by Diego Fabbrini.
  • 41:10 Henri Lansbury takes a shot and strikes the post.
  • 41:04 Clearance by Lewis McGugan.
  • 39:47 Clearance made by Marco Cassetti.
  • 38:50 Kelvin Wilson manages to make a clearance.
  • 38:48 Clearance made by Eric Lichaj.
  • 38:47 Daniel Pudil sends in a cross.
  • 38:28 Clearance made by Jack Hobbs.
  • 37:29 Marco Cassetti manages to make a clearance.
  • 37:04 Santos Iriney takes a shot. Blocked by Kelvin Wilson.
  • 36:50 Ikechi Anya delivers the ball.
  • 36:45 Free kick taken by Lloyd Doyley.
  • 36:28 Diego Fabbrini fouled by Andy Reid, the ref awards a free kick.
  • 34:48 Shot by Henri Lansbury went wide of the left-hand post.
  • 34:12 Manuel Almunia restarts play with the free kick.
  • 33:44 Jamie Mackie is flagged offside by the assistant referee.
  • 33:22 Radoslaw Majewski takes a shot. Manuel Almunia catches the ball.
  • 33:00 Diego Fabbrini takes a weak shot. Karl Darlow catches the ball.
  • 32:35 Santos Iriney restarts play with the free kick.
  • 32:22 Diego Fabbrini fouled by Adlene Guedioura, the ref awards a free kick.
  • 30:25 Henri Lansbury makes a clearance.
  • 29:59 Chris Cohen manages to make a clearance.
  • 28:55 Clearance made by Gabriele Angella.
  • 28:17 Henri Lansbury makes a clearance.
  • 28:14 A cross is delivered by Daniel Pudil.
  • 28:10 The ball is crossed by Ikechi Anya.
  • 27:59 Henri Lansbury manages to make a clearance.
  • 27:29 Henri Lansbury makes a clearance.
  • 27:26 Almen Abdi crosses the ball in from the free kick.
  • 26:57 Unfair challenge on Ikechi Anya by Greg Halford results in a free kick.
  • 26:34 Clearance made by Eric Lichaj.
  • 25:49 Adlene Guedioura takes a shot and went wide of the left-hand post.
  • 25:44 The ball is delivered by Radoslaw Majewski.
  • 25:42 Radoslaw Majewski decides to take a short corner.
  • 25:18 Clearance by Santos Iriney.
  • 25:18 Centre by Andy Reid.
  • 25:13 Free kick taken by Chris Cohen.
  • 24:55 Andy Reid fouled by Santos Iriney, the ref awards a free kick.
  • 24:26 Corner taken by Almen Abdi from the right by-line.
  • 23:53 Shot by Almen Abdi. Blocked by Adlene Guedioura.
  • 23:52 Clearance made by Jack Hobbs.
  • 23:50 The ball is swung over by Troy Deeney.
  • 23:18 Jack Hobbs manages to make a clearance.
  • 23:15 Ikechi Anya sends in a cross.
  • 22:53 Free kick taken by Marco Cassetti.
  • 22:35 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Troy Deeney by Eric Lichaj.
  • 21:47 Karl Darlow takes the free kick.
  • 21:18 Almen Abdi gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Henri Lansbury.
  • 21:14 Clearance by Daniel Pudil.
  • 20:03 Clearance made by Marco Cassetti.
  • 20:02 Andy Reid crosses the ball.
  • 19:45 Gabriele Angella restarts play with the free kick.
  • 19:28 Jamie Mackie is flagged offside by the assistant referee.
  • 18:16 Clearance made by Jack Hobbs.
  • 17:45 Adlene Guedioura makes a clearance.
  • 17:37 Lloyd Doyley restarts play with the free kick.
  • 16:57 Chris Cohen gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Ikechi Anya.
  • 16:31 Clearance by Jack Hobbs.
  • 16:28 The ball is crossed by Ikechi Anya.
  • 16:20 Manuel Almunia restarts play with the free kick.
  • 16:06 Foul by Jamie Mackie on Manuel Almunia, free kick awarded.
  • Correction - 16:01 Corner from the right by-line taken by Andy Reid.
  • 16:01 Corner taken by Andy Reid from the right by-line.
  • 15:18 Corner taken by Almen Abdi.
  • 14:55 Andy Reid makes a clearance.
  • 14:39 Radoslaw Majewski manages to make a clearance.
  • 14:19 Gabriele Angella manages to make a clearance.
  • 14:18 The ball is swung over by Andy Reid.
  • 13:33 Free kick taken by Chris Cohen.
  • 13:04 Santos Iriney challenges Radoslaw Majewski unfairly and gives away a free kick.
  • 12:55 Header by Troy Deeney misses to the right of the target.
  • 12:53 Daniel Pudil delivers the ball.
  • 11:53 A cross is delivered by Lewis McGugan.
  • 11:36 A cross is delivered by Radoslaw Majewski.
  • 11:15 Andy Reid has an effort at goal. Lloyd Doyley gets a block in.
  • 11:11 Daniel Pudil manages to make a clearance.
  • 11:10 A cross is delivered by Adlene Guedioura.
  • 10:12 The ball is swung over by Chris Cohen.
  • 9:45 Lloyd Doyley manages to make a clearance.
  • 9:30 Almen Abdi takes a shot.
  • 7:11 Clearance made by Lewis McGugan.
  • 6:58 Adlene Guedioura manages to make a clearance.
  • 6:53 Clearance by Kelvin Wilson.
  • 6:51 Daniel Pudil crosses the ball.
  • 5:26 Jamie Mackie provided the assist for the goal.
  • 5:26 GOAL - Andy ReidWatford 0 - 1 Nott'm Forest Andy Reid scores with a left foot finish. Watford 0-1 Nottm Forest.
  • Correction - 5:25 GOAL - Andy ReidWatford 0 - 1 Nott'm Forest Andy Reid scores with their left foot. Watford 0-1 Nottm Forest.
  • Correction - 5:25 The assist for the goal came from Jamie Mackie.
  • 4:55 Gabriele Angella restarts play with the free kick.
  • 4:23 Free kick awarded for a foul by Radoslaw Majewski on Santos Iriney.
  • 4:20 Santos Iriney makes a clearance.
  • 2:01 Manuel Almunia restarts play with the free kick.
  • 1:38 Greg Halford is flagged offside by the assistant referee.
  • Correction - 0:50 Chris Cohen makes a clearance.
  • 0:50 Clearance by Jack Hobbs.
  • 0:46 Almen Abdi crosses the ball in from the free kick.
  • 0:17 Chris Cohen concedes a free kick for a foul on Ikechi Anya.
  • 0:00 The referee gets the game underway.

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