Steve Cooper pleased as Forest bounce back from Luton loss against West Brom

The home side cruised into a dominant position after Darnell Furlong collected a second yellow card in only the 17th minute.

By Press Association Published: 18 April 2022 - 10.14pm

Steve Cooper praised his Nottingham Forest side for bouncing back from defeat at Luton with a thumping 4-0 victory over another play-off rival in West Brom.

And the Reds boss said wing-back Jack Colback had insisted in the dressing room that he had intended to shoot with the spectacular goal that made it 3-0 just before half-time at the City Ground.

The home side cruised into a dominant position after Darnell Furlong had collected a second yellow card in only the 17th minute, following up a foul on Philip Zinckernagel by handling a James Garner shot in the area.

Brennan Johnson converted the penalty and Ryan Yates added another with a 23rd-minute header, before Colback hit a spectacular volley from the tightest of angles, wide on the left.  Sam Surridge completed the scoring in the third minute of added time, as Forest took a firmer grip on their position in the play-off places.

“To win a game 4-0, you have to do a lot of things well – and we did. We took real control. We forced them into a situation where they were down to 10 men, we forced the 1-0, the 2-0 and got the third,” said Cooper.

“Jack said that he tried it… brilliant. I will let him talk about that. But he was excellent, man of the match. Jack is not a character who generally craves any extra praise. He is a bit of a throwback on that front. I am not going to argue with him if he said he meant it.

“It is one of the best goals we have seen at the City Ground this season, even if we have seen a few good ones.  I thought the fourth goal was good as well… I don’t know how many passes there were involved.

“It was a job well done. We just played really well. And the thing that mattered most… we felt really hard done by, after Friday (when Forest lost 1-0 at Luton) when a lot of the decisions and things did not go our way.

“That is what pleased me most – our attitude and approach to the game.”

Baggies boss Steve Bruce was not impressed with referee David Webb.

“I’ve seen the penalty incident,” said Bruce. “Furs (Furlong) is on the ground and his head’s looking away at the goal. It hits his arm, yes. You give a penalty, but do you have to show a yellow card? A sending off… then the game evaporates.”

West Brom also felt a throw-in decision should have gone their way in the build-up to the second goal.

He added: “The debacle over the throw-in was ridiculous, the assistant flagged that it was our throw. The ref’s overruled him. Then Forest score from the corner. They are two awful decisions.”

Sub Taylor Gardner-Hickman might have got into more trouble with the referee after lashing the ball into the crowd – for which he received a yellow card.

“He didn’t mean that,” said Bruce. “If the ball has hit someone in the crowd, then we’ll get in touch. He’s a young player who’s as genuine as they come. We will apologise if it’s hit someone.”

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