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Johnson Double Earns Forest Draw With Struggling Everton

  • 3 min read

Forward Brennan Johnson scored two goals as Nottingham Forest twice came from behind to secure a 2-2 draw against struggling Everton in a feisty Premier League game at the City Ground on Sunday.

Demarai Gray put Everton ahead from the penalty spot after Jonjo Shelvey fouled Dwight McNeil, before Johnson scored his first with a finish at the back post when Jordan Pickford could only parry the ball into his path.

Abdoulaye Doucoure netted his first goal for 18 months to restore Everton’s advantage before the half-hour mark with a header from close-range, but Johnson had the final say with a superb finish into the top corner after Doucoure gave the ball away in midfield.

Everton remained third-bottom of the table with 22 points from 26 matches, having played one game more than their relegation rivals. Forest are in 14th with 26 points from their 25 matches.

“I’m pleased, we’re doing the right things and there’s been real commitment to the cause since I joined,” Everton manager Sean Dyche told BBC Radio.

“We got in so many good positions today. It’s just the details now, we’ve got to stamp out the mistakes but we defended well and countered today.

“There was a lot of plusses about the performance. We know that we have to win games but you have to re-start and this showed a real step forward.

“This was a really good away performance. It’s a great building block to carry on the journey with.”

The visitors had a strong claim for a second penalty when Seamus Coleman appeared to be impeded by Forest midfielder Jack Colback but referee John Brooks turned down their vociferous appeals and he handed out eight yellow cards in a game that threatened to boil over at times.

Forest battled to create clear-cut chances but the quality of the excellent Johnson was enough to earn them a precious point in their bid to avoid being sucked into the relegation mix.

“We definitely deserved at least a draw but we also need to know we have to do better with the goals conceded,” Forest manager Steve Cooper told Sky Sports.

“I am disappointed with the referee but we’ll reflect on it. I thought he got lots of decisions wrong.

“You want to win or lose with what the opponent does – not the officials. The lads are a bit disappointed they didn’t win but they gave everything and showed courage.”