Rovers FT: Forest 0 Doncaster 0

Doncaster Rovers - Sam Johnstone
Doncaster Rovers - Sam Johnstone

Rovers picked up a fine point at play-offs chasing Nottingham Forest and might have snatched a late winner.

Rovers hoped to build on their back-to-back home wins and put further distance between themselves and the bottom three at the City Ground today.

The visitors’ afternoon got off to a less than perfect start as Quinn was forced off for treatment on a head injury inside the first minute.

He returned to the field with his side up against it as Forest enjoyed all the early possession, with Paterson forcing an easy early save from Johnstone after latching onto Cox’s clever knockdown.

Jara’s whipped cross then caused consternation in the Doncaster defence but it missed out everyone and went out for a throw.

Paterson then blazed another decent chance well wide after a lovely ball into the box by the returning Reid.

Forest’s diamond midfield were threatening to run the game but as the 20-minute mark approached Doncaster enjoyed their best spell of possession.

It led to Wellens’ long-range effort being tipped wide by Darlow, and from the resultant short corner Coppinger saw his drilled effort parried wide by the Forest keeper.

At the other end Halford was slotted through but his effort lacked any sort of conviction and Johnstone was able to get down and make a comfortable save.

Halford was then the target for Paterson’s searching cross but it evaded the defender-turned-striker at the back stick.

A coming together involving Wellens then saw Forest given a free kick in a dangerous area but Reid’s curling effort was plucked out of the air comfortably by Johnstone, again impressing in nets for Rovers.

Doncaster were showing glimmers of life. Cotterill found space on the left flank but cut inside and dragged his shot wide of the near post.

Johnstone then enhanced his blossoming reputation with another stunning save, this time getting down to stop Majewski’s low effort before Quinn hacked Cox’s follow-up attempt off the line.

Rovers were under the cosh again as half-time approached. Paterson wanted a penalty for a foul by Coppinger right on the angle but from the resultant free kick Lascelles headed over from point blank range.

But after resisting Forest’s numerous attacks, Rovers appeared to gain in confidence as the game remained goalless.

Rovers started the second half on the front foot and forced an early corner. Taken short to Husband, the full back blazed high and wide.

The ball then fell kindly to Wellens from distance but his looping effort dipped just over Darlow’s bar.

Forest began to see more of the ball. Halford battled with Meite to get on the end of Collins’ clipped ball into the box but looped a gentle header onto the roof of the net.

The home side appealed hopefully and unsuccessfully for two handballs in the Rovers box as they started to enjoy more territory. Quinn did well to block Paterson’s piledriver as Forest upped the tempo and probed for a way past Doncaster’s disciplined defensive line.

There was a sense Doncaster fancied pinching a goal - but for the moment they had gone into their shells a little as Rossington lad Henderson came on for Cox.

Duffy was asking questions at the other end. He did well to hold off Fox but Darlow was equal to his low, drilled effort.

From a free kick played into the box, Sharp saw his close-range volley deflected just wide before Duffy picked up possession but dragged his shot wide of the post.

It was Doncaster’s best spell of the game and the chances kept on coming.

Duffy saw another decent effort deflected wide. Forest responded by bringing on Derbyshire for Halford.

There was more uncertainty in the home defence when Quinn headed Cotterill’s free kick back across goal and Darlow punched clear.

A superbly whipped Cotterill free kick from the right was then headed inches wide by Sharp.Rovers carved the Forest defence open again moments later, Sharp playing in Husband but his shot was parried wide by Darlow.

Johstone’s handling continued to be superb at the other end, as Forest’s main threat was from set pieces.

Cotterill fizzed a shot wide from distance, while at the other end Johnstone fisted over a piledriver from Majewski and Derbyshire headed over from a corner. The point ended Rovers’ run of three successive away defeats.