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Wednesday 16 August 2017

Murphy on double but Forest still remain unbeaten

Nottingham Forest boss Stuart Pearce was relieved to see Michail Antonio's late equaliser preserve their unbeaten run in the Sky Bet Championship as his header forced a 2-2 draw with Ipswich.

Forest had been trailing at the City Ground after Irishman Daryl Murphy netted twice either side of Robert Tesche's first goal for the Reds, before Antonio headed in Henri Lansbury's corner to salvage a point.

Pearce said: "Ipswich were in good form and were a well-organised team and it was a real blood and thunder game that swung from end to end.

"I think we got caught up trying to match the way they played. At half-time we told them to have more belief and we changed the shape slightly and I think we dominated the second half.

"I was disappointed it took so long for us to get the equaliser as I thought we would win it, certainly with the chances we created in the second half, but their goalkeeper made some outstanding saves - and if he wasn't there, defenders scooped shots off the line.

"It was a real cup final in a Championship game, if you like."

The point took Forest into second, but Pearce insisted there is plenty of improvement to come from his side, who took over an hour to get into their stride.

mentality

He went on: "I know we will get better and I think we'll constantly improve because of the mentality of the squad."

The Forest boss also saluted Antonio after his dramatic equaliser, adding: "I think he's done fantastic for us since he's come in."

Ipswich boss Mick McCarthy was left feeling disappointed after the late sucker punch, but admitted he took heart from his side's display, and also reserved praise for two-goal hero Murphy, saying: "They were two great goals from a striker playing some of the best football of his career and enjoying his football.

"I have known him for a long time and Terry (Connor) is one of the best coaches of strikers I have seen and he's done wonders with him."

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