A much-changed Nottingham Forest side produced a terrific performance to dismantle Derby County 3-0 at The City Ground to secure their place in the third round of the Carabao Cup.
Goals from Albert Adomah, Joe Lolley and Joao Carvalho on his return from injury helped Forest progress in the competition and seal a second consecutive victory over The Rams in the East Midlands derby.
Sabri Lamouchi made eight changes to the Forest side that beat Fulham on Saturday as he handed a first start to 18-year-old Brennan Johnson, while Carvalho was named on the bench for the first time this season.
It was a cagey opening at The City Ground as neither side really created any clear-cut chances in the first 15 minutes, with Rafa Mir coming the closest – his 20-yard effort whistled well wide of target.
Forest then conjured up two great opportunities to take the lead. Firstly, Matty Cash’s delivery was headed down into the path of Mir but his firmly-hit volley flew over the bar. Moments later, Johnson pulled the ball back for Mir who’s side-footed effort stung the palms of Derby keeper Ben Hamer.
The Reds continued to press for an opener and took the lead in the 25th minute. Lolley’s in-swinging corner was tapped home from close range by Adomah for his second goal in three games after netting in Forest’s draw at Charlton.
Ten minutes later and The Reds had doubled their advantage with a fine header from Lolley. Adomah turned provider as he crossed for Lolley to head into the bottom corner past Hamer who stood no chance.
Forest sat back and allowed Derby to dominate possession as former Red Jamie Paterson created an opportunity for Lee Buchanan but he blazed way over Brice Samba’s crossbar as Forest took their lead in to the break.
The Reds started the second half brightly and could have added a third when Cash’s effort was just deflected wide. From the resulting corner, Mir met Lolley’s floated delivery but his header was caught by Hamer.
As the half wore on, Derby started to gain a foothold on proceedings without really creating any opportunities. Substitute Jack Marriott had a chance in the 70th minute as his snap-shot was superbly blocked by Joe Worrall, who was fantastic all evening.
However, it was The Reds who scored a third and in fortuitous fashion. In the 79th minute, Curtis Davies’ clearance cannoned off Carvalho and past Hamer in a flash to send the packed Trentside crowd wild.
Forest controlled the final few minutes and saw the game out as they sealed another impressive home victory to make it six games unbeaten in all competitions and ensure that they retain the Brian Clough Trophy.
Forest: Samba, Ribeiro, Figueireda, Worrall (c) (Rodriguez 83’), Cash, Bostock, Mir, Semedo, Lolley (Silva 68’), Adomah, Johnson (Carvalho 57’)
Unused subs: Muric, Grabban, Jenkinson, Ameobi
Goals: Adomah 25’, Lolley 35’ Carvalho 79’
Derby: Hamer, Shinnie (Bird 83’), Paterson, Clarke, Evans, Bennett, Holmes, Davies (c), Sibley (Marriott 58’), Buchanan, Whittaker (Mitchell-Lawson 70’)
Unused subs: Roos, Keogh, Lawrence, Knight
Bookings: Buchanan 28’ Paterson 49’
Referee: John Brooks
Attendance: 26,971 (3,331 away)