Bergkamp floods Forest
Nottingham Forest 0 Arsenal 1 Bergkamp 60 Attendance: 27,222
Sunday 11 February 1996
They could hardly complain. Arsenal were not exactly scintillating but they were compact, well-briefed and might have won by a wider margin. Forest were so lacking in ideas that David Seaman scarcely dirtied his goal-keeping gloves.
Forest remain essentially an attractive passing side but their inability to score goals has become a chronic malaise. Not since the beginning of November have they managed to tot up more than two in the same match and more often than not they have had to be content with one. "It has reached the point when our defence know they have to keep a clean sheet if we are to have any chance of winning," their manager, Frank Clark, lamented.
The absence of Ian Woan and the improving Andrea Silenzi - both injured - hardly helped, although the return of Steve Stone added bite on the right. Bryan Roy, whose own form has tended to rise and fall with the team's, looked out of touch. It was a timely moment for Kevin Campbell, in his best form since leaving Highbury last summer, to remind Arsenal of his talents, if only he had been given the semblance of a chance.
Arsenal, respectful of Forest's home form, set out primarily to contain but overdid it at first. It took them half an hour to muster a worthwhile attempt on goal. But then Martin Keown, up for Glenn Helder's corners was close to heading his side in front twice within two minutes.
It needed all Bruce Rioch's encouragement to instill greater ambitions in his side for the second half, which began with Ian Wright going close after Helder and Paul Merson had worked an opening on the left. The goal soon followed, Bergkamp seizing possession from a defender and exchanging passes with Wright, whom Forest tried to catch offside. Wright's return was neatly tucked away.
Leaden-footed, Forest almost conceded a second when Wright was allowed free access to a Bergkamp cross with 13 minutes of the match remaining. The forward headed against the bar and even managed a second bite before Mark Crossley pushed the ball to safety. To cap Forest's afternoon, the substitute Jason Lee was went off close to the end, having been booked twice in as many minutes.
"I'm less concerned with losing the home record than with the fact that we played with so little wit and quality," Clark said. A month away from a stern European test against Bayern Munich, he has good reason to be worried.
Latest in Sport
David De Gea to Real Madrid: Spanish club resume £28m pursuit after fending Manchester United off Sergio Ramos
Karim Benzema to Arsenal: Transfer news live - Angel Di Maria to leave Manchester United, Emmanuel Adebayor to Aston Villa
Diego Costa biography: Chelsea striker's route to the top - from those who shared his journey
Ashes 2015 Third Test Day One report: England skittle Australia for 136, James Anderson takes six wickets, Ian Bell hits half-century
Nicolas Otamendi to Manchester United: Sergio Ramos is only defender of interest to Louis van Gaal
- 1 Australia to impose 24-hour curfew on all cats to protect endangered species
- 2 Model's video shoot on the beach interrupted by sudden landing of a group of illegal migrants
- 3 The difference between a psychopath and a sociopath
- 4 MH370: Boeing 777 wing that could match missing plane found on the French island of Reunion
- 5 'Killer robots' with AI must be banned, urge Stephen Hawking, Noam Chomsky and thousands of others in open letter
Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn – or a return to a Labour government
Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn says 'we can learn a great deal from Karl Marx'
I am the Jeremy Corbyn supporter that many will tell you doesn't exist
Public anger after French sunbather beaten up by gang for wearing a bikini in Reims park
Labour leadership: New poll shows party is now even 'less electable' than under Ed Miliband
Labour leadership contest: I would never quit the party, says Liz Kendall
£10500 - £14000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Part Time Accounts Assistant ...
£18000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company supply, install an...
£120 - £140 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: An excellent three form entry scho...
£65000 Per Annum bonus & benefits package: The Green Recruitment Company: The ...