The Warmdown: Forest tighten play-off push with Blues win
Keinan Davis of Nottingham Forest celebrates with his teammates after scoring a goal to make it 1-0 during the Sky Bet Championship match between Nottingham Forest and Birmingham City at the City Ground, Nottingham on Saturday 9th April 2022. (Photo by Jon Hobley/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

After comfortably dispatching Coventry City in their midweek fixture, much-needed momentum was on the side of Nottingham Forest to maintain their push for promotion in the EFL Championship.

A 2-0 win pushed Steve Cooper's men up into third in the table, six points away from Bournemouth in second.

With only five minutes on the clock, Forest had opened the scoring. Phillip Zinckernagel won possession inside the Birmingham Cityhalf and broke the ball for Brennan Johnson, who played Keinan Davis in down the left flank. The Aston Villa loanee muscled his way past Nico Gordon and fired low across goal from an acute angle for his fifth goal of the campaign.

With four minutes of the first half remaining, Forest came close to a second as James Garner wrapped his right foot around a shot 25 yards from goal which flew barely wide of Neil Etheridge’s post.

With just over ten minutes left to play though, The Reds doubled their lead.  From Garner's corner, Scott McKenna rose highest to nod home inside a congested penalty area for 2-0.

Birmingham rarely managed to get forward and threaten the Forest goal, with The Blues completing just one dribble against the Forest defence.

The full-time whistle blew as The Reds won five successive league games for the first time since March 2013.

Forest daring to dream

A trip to Wembley might be something that Nottingham Forest have never experienced in their history, but the prospect of Steve Coopers side doing what seemed impossible at the start of the season is becoming more apparent by the day.

No side that has been bottom of the table in the Championship after eight games has been promoted before, yet that is exactly what The Reds are on course to pull off, as they sit in third place with seven games to go.

Forest have also won five games in a row for the first time in over eight years, with positive momentum coming at the perfect time ahead of a tough run-in at the play-offs, or possibly even automatic promotion.

Forest sit six points away from The Cherries, who are currently in second, and still have to play them at their place in the penultimate game of the season, which could prove to be one of the biggest games in Forest history.

Where do Forest go from here?

Forest will have to play fellow play-off contenders Luton Town, Swansea City, Bournemouth and Fulham in the midst of their charge, so racking up comfortable wins in manners like this will serve vital to the health of their promtion push.

Amongst the games against the big-hitters, The Reds will also play against Peterborough United and Hull City, where they will be expected to come away with three points. Consistency in play and dogged determination are things that we have cost Forest in previous pushes, and many eyes will be turned to them during a hectic battle for the top six.