Johnson at the double in Stags win
Forest racked up a 3-0 win in their pre-season friendly away at Mansfield today, with David Johnson bagging a brace.
In their first friendly of the summer on English soil things started well for the Reds as Jack Lester pounced to open the scoring on just six minutes.
Former Ipswich man Johnson then added further efforts on 10 minutes and 37 minutes to leave them firmly in the ascendancy at half-time, and Paul Hart used the opportunity to field a much younger XI in the second 45 minutes - although they could not add to the scoreline.
Mansfield Town 0 v 3 Nottingham Forest
Forest: Ward, Louis-Jean, Walker, Hjelde, Brennan, Scimeca, Prutton, Williams, Lester, Johnson, Harewood
Team Two for final 30 mins.
Roche, Edwards, Dawson, Hall, Doig, Reid, Haskins, Cash, Bopp, Jones Westcarr
Goals: Lester 6mins, Johnson 10mins, 37mins
Pre-season training seemed to be paying dividends this afternoon as Forest notched up 3 goals in the first half of this friendly against Mansfield Town. In what must be something like the side which Paul Hart intends to start the new season we saw a good 60 minutes of football with some good passing and clever moves which had obviously been worked on since the players returned to training.
The formation was different to what we had been seeing last season with Riccy Scimeca moving into midfield and Jack Lester dropping behind the front two strikers.
Des Walker wore the captain's armband and was greeted with the inevitable "You'll never beat Des Walker" by nearly 2,000 Forest fans in the almost full Quarry Lane Stand. He was obviously delighted and acknowledged them with arms punching the air.
The first goal came with the game just 5 minutes old. Harewood was brought down in midfield but the referee allowed the advantage to be played as Lester was running clear on goal and did well to steer the ball past the keeper and into the net.
Just 5 minutes later and we were treated to another as Harewood put the ball across the face of the goal to Johnson who had an easy job to just toe the ball over the line.
The third goal was much more of a fluke. Louis-Jean crossed the ball to Johnson who scissor kicked at close range and by more luck than judgement the ball went into the back of the net.
It has to be said that Mansfield Town put up very little resistance. Their defence was almost nonexistent and they had no chances to speak of to worry the Forest defence.
The second half had much more of the feel of a pre-season friendly about it and after 15 minutes Hart changed the whole team. It was good to see some of the youngsters given a chance and it was definitely good to see what Marcus Hall could do. Considering he hasn't played since April he looked very fast and sharp on the ball and as Paul Hart commented after the match, he is a class player.
The manager also told us that he was very pleased with the players today and is very happy in general with the way pre-season training has gone so far.
The opposition on Wednesday, when we play Newcastle, should give a better indication of how Forest will do this season.
FOOTBALL: JOHNSON POLISHED
A DOUBLE blast from £3m forgotten man, David Johnson, shot rampant Forest to a 3-0 win.
The former Ipswich man was on top form in the opening 45 minutes as the visitors pushed through the Stags' defence at will.
In the sixth minute, Jack Lester put the First Division side ahead. Four minutes later Mansfield fell 2-0 behind when Johnson fired the ball home from a Marlon Harewood cross.
Johnson made it 3-0 on 36 minutes with a close-range scissor-kick.
Latest | July 2002