Nottingham Forest 2 Tottenham Hotspur 2
Still one section of the FA Cup's quarter-final puzzle remains unfilled after two brilliantly executed free-kicks by winger Ian Woan earned Forest a second chance at White Hart Lane on Saturday week, leaving Aston Villa still waiting to learn who they will face in the last eight.
Woan struck first in the fourth minute but it was his second stunning strike, 17 minutes from the end, that brought Forest a huge measure of relief after two goals by Chris Armstrong had put Tottenham in control.
Forest, less than a week away from the first leg of their Uefa Cup test against Bayern Munich, felt they might have had a penalty in the dying seconds when Sol Campbell, straddling the 18-yard line, appeared to control the ball with a hand. They seemed to have a case, although all-square was probably a just result.
This was the fifth-round tie to surrendered to a blizzard 10 days ago, abandoned inside a quarter of an hour. Last night's rematch began with another, in a sense, with two goals in the first eight minutes.
Forest had suffered the sharp edge of Frank Clark's tongue after a dismal performance at Everton at the weekend and, given the criticism he suffered, it was a surprise to see Bryan Roy regain his place ahead of Andrea Silenzi.
Clark clearly expected a positive response from all concerned and had not long to wait to be given it in the shape of Woan's splendid opening goal. A good 25 yards from goal after Roy had been impeded by Gary Mabbutt in a position slightly right of centre, Woan had a lot of white-shirted bodies between himself and the Tottenham goal, but curled his free-kick into Ian Walker's top left corner.
It was a perfect boost to Forest's morale, but the effect was to spark an explosive response from Tottenham, who drew level four minutes later when Armstrong completed a well executed dead-ball routine in which Teddy Sheringham headed Colin Calderwood's free-kick across goal and his strike partner rose to add the finishing touch.
Armstrong put Tottenham ahead after 27 minutes, pouncing on an error by Mark Crossley, whose failure to take hold of Sol Campbell's cross presented him with a gift.
Tottenham seemed content to protect their advantage, inviting Forest to attack for much of the second half and for the most part it seemed the policy would succeed, especially after Walker had answered Forest's best chance with a double save to thwart Kevin Campbell and then Roy.
Just as Tottenham were starting to look secure 17 minutes from time, another magnificent free-kick by Woan, bent in from a tight angle from the right, punished Ronny Rosenthal's foul on Steve Stone.
Nottingham Forest (4-4-2): Crossley; Lyttle, Cooper (Haland, 30), Chettle, Phillips; Stone (Silenzi, 88), Gemmill, Bart-Williams, Woan; K Campbell, Roy. Substitute not used: Fettis (gk).
Tottenham Hotspur (4-4-2): Walker; S Campbell, Calderwood, Mabbutt, Wilson; Fox, Dozzell, Howells, Rosenthal; Armstrong (McMahon, 70), Sheringham. Substitutes not used: Nethercott, Day (gk).
Referee: G Willard (Worthing).
More reports, results, page 27Reuse content