Dean Smith felt Villa were ‘totally in control’ of 10-goal thriller with Forest



Posted Thursday, November 29, 2018 by PA

Dean Smith felt Villa were ‘totally in control’ of 10-goal thriller with Forest

Aston Villa manager Dean Smith struggled to comprehend how his side failed to win despite scoring five goals at home against Nottingham Forest.

Tammy Abraham scored four times as the hosts fought back from 2-0, 3-2 and 4-3 down but it proved in vain as 10-man Forest gained a remarkable 5-5 draw thanks to former Villa striker Lewis Grabban’s 82nd-minute equaliser.

It was the first ever 5-5 draw at Villa Park but Smith was of the opinion that his side should have emerged as winners.

He said: “The character and spirit of the players was clear to see but when you score five goals at home you should win the game.  Score five goals away you should win. It was one of those games.

“We were fully aware that they were a good counter-attacking team with pace but I am devastated for the players because to hit back so many times… I thought at 5-4 we would go on and win the match.

“We missed some very good chances and also had two disallowed goals and we are totally disappointed.  I thought we were totally in control of the game. It sounds weird but we had 26 attempts on goal compared to Forest’s eight.”

Abraham, who is on loan from Chelsea, scored Villa’s first four goals, including one from the penalty spot.

Smith said: “Tammy was disappointed he didn’t score six goals as he certainly had the chances.

“He is a player who shows great attitude and application.   He is great to have around the club.”

Forest demonstrated why they have only been beaten twice this season as they hit back despite Tobias Figueiredo’s dismissal in the 68th minute.

They led 4-3 at the time with within seven minutes Villa had scored twice, through Abraham’s fourth and a Anwar El Ghazi strike.

Forest had earlier surged into the lead through goals from Grabban and Joe Carvalho in the opening six minutes.

Abraham responded with two goals in three minutes to level the scores and completed a first-half hat-trick from the penalty spot after Jack Cash had restored Forest’s lead.

A blistering 35-yard drive from Lolley put Forest back ahead, but they were left needing Grabban’s late intervention to earn a point.

Forest manager Aitor Karanka, who said he did “not know if (Figueiredo’s) tackle was a sending off” was delighted with his side’s character.

He said: “When you see your players fighting until the last second I do not care how many goals we scored because we showed a lot of personality and character.

“It was a perfect stage to show these qualities against one of the best teams in the league.

“We have been working with only 17 players and coming up against a top side and scoring five goals shows the quality of the team.”

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