Football: Milosevic cast as the Villa villain

Nottingham Forest 0 Aston Villa 0 Attendance: 25,239

Forest might take heart from taking a point against opponents with Europe in their sights but their performance offered little to suggest that the battle to avoid relegation will be easily won. Villa had so much good possession they should have triumphed comfortably.

The contentious issue afterwards was the moment three minutes from time when Savo Milosevic, Villa's lumbering Serb, appeared to have put an embarrassing afternoon behind him by scoring the winning goal. Milosevic wheeled away in extravagant celebration, a left-foot shot hit without much power having surprisingly beaten Mark Crossley, only to be brought down to earth by the assistant referee's flag. Dwight Yorke, apparently, was the culprit.

Even the Forest bench thought the goal was good and Brian Little, the Villa manager, had to be at his most diplomatic. "We found it hard to believe Dwight was offside," he said. "The TV may show he was right but if the game has been shaped by a bad decision the players will be very disappointed."

They should be disappointed not to have had the points in the bag by then. It was largely through Milosevic's profligate finishing that they did not, the pounds 3.5m striker having missed two inviting chances, one after the other, in a first half dominated by his team.

A sliced clearance by Crossley, who later was to pull off some excellent saves, presented the Villa man with an open goal. But Milosevic headed well wide and missed the target by several feet again five minutes later when Yorke, having taken out two defenders with one brilliant turn, set him up.

From Forest there was much huffing and puffing but little end product. At a time of crisis, such as the one in which Forest find themselves at present, their player-manager Stuart Pearce, forced to remain in his tracksuit because of suspension, will have wanted to see rather more in the way of constructive effort.

Forest have found their plight in the Premiership reduced almost to a side issue lately; the takeover scramble, a European match-rigging scandal involving Anderlecht and the humiliation of losing to Chesterfield in the FA Cup have dominated thoughts. After three matches without a goal and only one point won, the threat of relegation is as real as ever, emphasising the importance of Monday's vote by shareholders, which could put the club in new ownership. Pearce believes that only with new funds before next month's transfer deadline will survival be a realistic proposition.

Forest surrendered possession all too easily yesterday but still Villa met with frustration in front of goal: Mark Draper rose to meet Alan Wright's cross only for Steve Chettle to head the ball clear from under the crossbar and Crossley pushed a long-range effort from Yorke wide of his left-hand post before Milosevic's disappointment.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
booksPhotographer Richard Young has been snapping celebrities at play for 40 years - but he says it wasn’t all fun and games...
News
i100
Sport
Aguero - who single-handedly has kept City's Champions League dreams alive - celebrates his dramatic late winner
footballManchester City 3 Bayern Munich 2: Argentine's late hat-rick sees home side snatch vital victory
News
Muhammad Ali pictured in better health in 2006
peopleBut he has enjoyed publicity from his alleged near-death experience
Arts and Entertainment
Tony breaks into Ian Garrett's yacht and makes a shocking discovery
TVReview: Revelations continue to make this drama a tough watch
News
news
News
peopleSinger tells The Independent what life is like in rehab in an exclusive video interview
News
The assumption that women are not as competent in leadership positions as men are leads to increased stress in the workplace
science... and it's down to gender stereotypes
Arts and Entertainment
Inner sanctum: Tove Jansson and friends in her studio in 1992
booksWhat was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Singer songwriter Bob Dylan performs on stage
films
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Austen Lloyd: Commercial Property Lawyer - Cheshire

Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: CHESHIRE MARKET TOWN - An exciting and rare o...

Austen Lloyd: Residential Property Solicitor - Hampshire

Excellent Salary : Austen Lloyd: NORTH HAMPSHIRE - SENIOR POSITION - An exciti...

Recruitment Genius: Gas Installation Engineer

£29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Gas Installation Engineer is required ...

Recruitment Genius: Domestic Gas Technical Surveyor

£28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Domestic Gas Technical Surveyor is req...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?
Nightclubbing with Richard Young: The story behind his latest book of celebrity photographs

24-Hour party person

Photographer Richard Young has been snapping celebrities at play for 40 years. As his latest book is released, he reveals that it wasn’t all fun and games
Michelle Obama's school dinners: America’s children have a message for the First Lady

A taste for rebellion

US children have started an online protest against Michelle Obama’s drive for healthy school meals by posting photos of their lunches
Colouring books for adults: How the French are going crazy for Crayolas

Colouring books for adults

How the French are going crazy for Crayolas
Jack Thorne's play 'Hope': What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

Playwright Jack Thorne's latest work 'Hope' poses the question to audiences
Ed Harcourt on Romeo Beckham and life as a court composer at Burberry

Call me Ed Mozart

Paloma Faith, Lana del Ray... Romeo Beckham. Ed Harcourt has proved that he can write for them all. But it took a personal crisis to turn him from indie star to writer-for-hire
10 best stocking fillers for foodies

Festive treats: 10 best stocking fillers for foodies

From boozy milk to wasabi, give the food-lover in your life some extra-special, unusual treats to wake up to on Christmas morning
Phil Hughes head injury: He had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Phil Hughes had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Prolific opener had world at his feet until Harmison and Flintoff bounced him
'I have an age of attraction that starts as low as four': How do you deal with a paedophile who has never committed a crime?

'I am a paedophile'

Is our approach to sex offenders helping to create more victims?
How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

Serco given Yarl’s Wood immigration contract despite ‘vast failings’
Green Party on the march in Bristol: From a lost deposit to victory

From a lost deposit to victory

Green Party on the march in Bristol
Putting the grot right into Santa's grotto

Winter blunderlands

Putting the grot into grotto
'It just came to us, why not do it naked?' London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital

'It just came to us, why not do it naked?'

London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital