Nottingham Forest blog: 4-4-2 with ball to feet is the only way to go

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Forest returned to Championship action away at Wolverhampton Wanderers, following yet another international break.

They were looking to build on the recent victory over Norwich and get within touching distance of the play offs.

The omens weren’t good as in the previous eight visits to Molineux they had won only once and lost seven.

Wolves had lost their previous two going into this game and had been absolutely thrashed by Derby in the process.

Forest started brilliantly thanks to the continuity of the 4-4-2 system, the passing and movement was top drawer.

They should have been a goal to the good before half-time when Henri Lansbury struck a post and Lascelles fluffed the easy follow up to make matters worse. The ever impressive Fryatt had also forced a great save from Ikeme, in the Wolves goal.

The half ended goalless and you feared that the curse of Molineux was to rear its ugly head in the second period.

However, Forest continued to attack with confidence and justifiably took the lead after 64 minutes.

Fryatt was awesome in the build up and his cross for Assombalonga was identical to that in the Norwich game a couple of weeks ago.

The top scorer tucked away his eleventh of the season with aplomb.

Fryatt then scored his second in as many games just two minutes later, Lansbury’s whipped corner was headed into the top right hand corner with ease by the experienced forward.

The confidence was really flowing and the tricky trees played with the kind of cohesion that had not been seen since the opening weeks of the season.

The 4-4-2 allows a variety of players to get involved and we always seem to score from wide positions when this formation is adopted.

It’s hard to believe that Pearce has so often gone with one up front and long ball this season.

Typically, Forest made it 3-0 from a wide position in the 82nd minute, when Osborn brilliantly picked out Antonio.

He crossed from the left for man of the match Lansbury, to drive home from the edge of the box.

This was to be the final score and it sealed the best performance of the season for me, interestingly Tom Ince was a sub but it should be Burke sat along side him and not Jamie Paterson.

There was even a rare cameo for Dexter Blackstock before the end, proving just how big this squad is.

The win was so unexpected that I received an e mail from ex-pat Ian Jones, now living in New Zealand, asking me to confirm that the comprehensive score-line was indeed an accurate broadcast!

I have been critical of Stuart Pearce this season and if I’m honest I still have massive doubts about his ability as a manager.

However, he got it spot on against Wolves and maybe we have seen the end of the long ball/one up front days?

Next up is Birmingham away and this will be an almighty test, Gary Rowett’s side are rejuvenated and looking very good indeed right now.

But this will be a long season for all concerned as despite being two points off the play offs, we are just four off the automatic places.