Nottingham Forest’s fears of being relegated were worsened by Brentford’s 2-1 victory at home, as Ivan Toney and Josh Dasilva scored goals in the latter part of the second half.
This left the visitors only one point above the relegation zone. Currently, Forest is in 17th place with 30 points, while Leicester City is in 18th and Everton in 19th with 28 points, and the two teams will play against each other on Monday.
Brentford, on the other hand, is placed ninth with 50 points. Dasilva’s shot from a difficult angle in the 93rd minute secured the victory for Brentford, maintaining their slim chances of qualifying for Europe.
“The ball came out to me and I just took my man on. Great feeling to score,” Dasilva said.
“It’s possible mathematically (to qualify for Europe) but we are obviously relying on other teams to lose which we can’t control.”
Brentford began the game with an attacking mindset, putting pressure on Nottingham Forest’s defense. However, Forest’s goalkeeper Keylor Navas and the backline managed to withstand the early onslaught, and Brentford struggled to convert their opportunities in the attacking third during the first half.
In the dying moments of the first half, Forest midfielder Danilo scored the opening goal for the visitors from six yards out, capitalizing on a heavily deflected shot from Morgan Gibbs-White.
Brentford’s main striker Ivan Toney had a quiet first half, but the team gradually improved after the break. It wasn’t until manager Thomas Frank changed tactics that Brentford began to pose a real threat in front of goal.
In a bid to score, Frank switched to a back three formation and introduced Yoane Wissa and Dasilva as wing backs.
“Thomas Frank just said to keep the width and make it hard for them. They were hard to break down, so we got it in the wide areas where our strengths are,” Dasilva added.
Throughout the second half, Brentford had been dominating the game but struggled to find the back of the net. However, in the 82nd minute, their persistence paid off as they scored the equalizer.
Ivan Toney, the English striker, managed to curl his free kick through a gap in the wall, beating Forest’s goalkeeper Keylor Navas, as the ball went in off the post, marking Toney’s 20th league goal.
Forest’s manager Steve Cooper appeared apprehensive as Josh Dasilva took matters into his own hands, scoring a solo effort by beating his defender and then firing a shot that Navas was unable to save.
Both sides nervously awaited the VAR check to confirm if Brentford’s Yoane Wissa was onside and not interfering with play. Once the referee confirmed the goal, Brentford celebrated their second win in eight games.
“We didn’t play our best. Sometimes you have to find a way to win and we did it ugly today,” Toney said.
“I think Forest are a great side, dug in well and if they stick at it they give themselves a chance of staying in the league.”