Royle relieved to claim a point

A RELIEVED Joe Royle accepted a point at Nottingham Forest last night but not the performance of some of his players – or the referee, writes Derek Davis.

A RELIEVED Joe Royle accepted a point at Nottingham Forest last night but not the performance of some of his players – or the referee, writes Derek Davis.

The Blues boss was livid that Wakefield official Alan Kaye didn't give Town a penalty when Darren Bent was bundled over, or book former Town goalscoring star David Johnson for a heavy tackle on Drissa Diallo.

Royle said: "If I said what I really think of the official I would get a three-year touchline ban.

"We should have had a penalty when Bent was brought down from behind but really that was just the start of the trend with the referee.

"Jason De Vos was booked for being fly-tackled and then Drissa Diallo could have had his leg broken and nothing is done.

"If officials can't recognise these things then, help."

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It was easy to see why Forest are among the promotion favourites and have not lost a competitive game at home since Joe Kinnear took charge in February, so a draw was a good result for Town.

Royle said: "I'm delighted with the point because I felt we didn't play second half. We played well enough first half without really threatening them.

"Having got an equaliser it was looking for us to go on but we didn't, although we dug in for the point.

"We always have a goal in us but that was hard to see on the night.

"We were disappointing up front and the difference between us and Forest was their two front men and ours.

Not many teams will come here and win and their season depends on whether they can keep Andy Reid. He is a terrific player."

Royle was unhappy with many of his players, especially the front two, but had praise for two of his players who were cheered to the rafters by a 1,500-strong band of travelling Town followers.

He said: "Kelvin Davis was outstanding and I thought Drissa Diallo defended very well.

"Tony Dinning had a very useful debut but after that I'm looking for players to step up."

Once again Town have had to come from behind and while they got one goal they had to hang on to secure the point.

Royle said: "It was down to one goal and we dug in. We had Tony (Dinning) playing his first game in a while and Jason (De Vos) could have ideally done with another 48 hours to get fit.

"We had players up front who didn't keep the ball and that caused problems – again."

Dean Bowditch started on the bench as Royle looked for more experience up front and he went with four in midfield.

Royle added: "We don't have too many forwards with great defensive instincts so to play three up front away from home against strong sides would be dangerous."

Forest boss Kinnear was delighted with the way his side played and feels Forest will go on from here.

Kinnear said: "We played really well. We dominated the game and hit the post and the crossbar.

"Our keeper had one save to make all night and that was from a corner.

"We missed five chances inside the six yard box and their keeper was their best player by a mile.

"Ipswich were lucky and they know that."

A host of Premiership managers and scouts were in the Forest stands, with the main interest being Irish international Andy Reid.

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