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Match Reports

Blades 2-0 Forest - report

19 April 2019

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Goals from Mark Duffy and Enda Stevens saw United return to winning ways on Good Friday.

Both scored after the break as the Blades capitalised on Forest having defender Yohan Benalouane sent off for a foul on David McGoldrick.

Boss Wilder made four changes for the lunchtime date with Forest. With Egan suspended and Sharp and Basham missing with hamstring issues, Baldock, Cranie, Stearman and Madine all started, with Freeman dropping to the bench.

United were the ones on the front foot in the opening ten minutes, Madine was a live threat, whilst Norwood tried to catch Pantilimon napping from distance following a quick free-kick. Cash hurled a couple of long throws into the United box, with Yacob firing high and wide in the second phase from one of them.

On 18 minutes, Colback advanced forward from left-back and went to ground under a challenge from Duffy, but referee Madley adjudged the Forest skipper had dived and subsequently booked him. Moments later Madine got across the front of Benalouane and was inches away from diverting Stevens pinpoint cross past Pantilimon. A swift break from the Blades ended with Madine agonisingly close again, this time to getting on the end of McGoldrick's header across the face of goal.

At the other end, Yacob disposed Duffy before playing in Murphy, who dragged a left-footed effort wide of Henderson's far post. Just before the break, Bryam was booked after Madley eventually decided he had committed a foul on McGoldrick, after Lolley had been caught in possession. From the resulting free-kick, United tried a short one, but it was cleared at the near post.

During the four minutes of added time, Cranie was booked for a foul on Cash, before Stevens almost profited from a fortunate bounce, but it remained all square entering the break.

The second erupted into life in the 48th minute, United seized the ball in midfield following a slip from Pele and Benalouane was given a straight red card for a cynical foul as McGoldrick went past him and was in on goal. From the free-kick, the ball was worked to Fleck, who saw a deflected effort saved by Pantilimon.

But two minutes later there was no stopping United, as DUFFY took a touch and composed himself before curling home into the top corner at the back post after Forest had only half cleared Norwood's cross from the right. In United's next attack it was almost two, Duffy got the better of Colback, but Pantilimon just about managed to keep out McGoldrick's toe poke.

As the hour mark ticked by, Duffy almost caught out Pantilimon with a deep cross, but the goalkeeper managed to tip it over for a corner, but Norwood fired over from a promising position, as Hogan replaced Madine. Baldock was booked despite appearing to be fouled first, before Lundstram replaced Cranie.

But on 85 minutes, the Blades made sure of the points. Fleck won the ball off Lolley and McGoldrick powered forward before feeding STEVENS who hit a low shot perfectly past Pantilimon into the bottom to the delight of the majority inside Bramall Lane.

Four minutes of added time were signalled and they passed without incident as United applied three potentially valuable to the tally.

Blades: Henderson, Baldock, Stevens, Fleck, O'Connell, Madine (Hogan 66), Norwood, McGoldrick, Stearman, Duffy (Dowell 86), Cranie (Lundstram 78).
Unused: Coutts, Freeman, Moore, Washington.

Forest: Pantilimon, Colback, Murphy (Grabban 58), Wague, Cash, Yates, Lolley, Yacob (Appiah 75), Bryam, Pele (Milosevic 50), Benalouane.
Unused: Watson, Osborn, Steele, Ansarifard.

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