Adlene Guedioura's strike was enough to defeat Bristol City and ensure Sean O'Driscoll got off to a winning start as Nottingham Forest manager.
The midfielder turned in Simon Cox's pass with 19 minutes remaining to settle an entertaining and even match.
Jon Stead had a 20-yard effort tipped over by Forest keeper Lee Camp and he missed the target from six yards.
Andy Reid's 25-yard free-kick was well saved by City keeper Tom Heaton as Forest finished the match strongly.
The hosts had the better of the early exchanges, Lewis McGugan seeing an effort blocked and Simon Gillett sending an 18-yard volley over the bar.
City started to settle midway through the first period and began to pressurise the home goal.
Camp was forced to make several decent stops, most notably keeping out a fine 25-yard strike from Albert Adomah and tipping over Stead's long-range effort.
At the other end, Dexter Blackstock wasted a glorious opening from six yards for Forest.
The Robins continued to have the better of things after the interval and should have taken the lead after 52 minutes when Stead missed the target from close range.
Stead wasted a further decent opening before the visitors were made to pay when Guedioura struck home the winner from a central position, 12 yards out, after great work by Cox.
Forest had chances to increase their lead late on but Reid's free-kick was saved and Blackstock fired an effort over the bar.
Nottingham Forest manager Sean O'Driscoll:
"It's a beginning. People say: 'This is a good start'. But a start is 10 games.
"You always want to get three points. It was a good beginning, it was always going to be tight.
"It was a typical opening day of the season - hot - I thought both sets of players dealt with the conditions."
Bristol City manager Derek McInnes:
"I thought we could have had a penalty but decisions went against us.
"We've got to hope they go our way in other tight games.
"What we have to do now is move on, take the positives from the game and try and get the three points against Crystal Palace on Tuesday night."
Catch up with all the latest highlights from the Championship on the Football League Show
- 01 Camp
- 03 Harding
- 05 Collins
- 15 Halford
- 18 Moloney
- 04 Gillett
- 07 Guedioura
- 10 McGugan (Cox - 68' )
- 11 Reid Booked (Greening - 90' )
- 28 Majewski (Lascelles - 90' )
- 23 Blackstock
- 31 Evtimov
- 02 Hutchinson
- 16 Lascelles
- 14 Greening
- 17 McGoldrick
- 19 Cox
- 20 Tudgay
- 01 Heaton
- 02 Foster (Elliott - 70' )
- 03 Wilson
- 04 Fontaine
- 06 Carey
- 17 Cunningham Booked
- 11 Woolford (Anderson - 78' )
- 14 Skuse
- 15 Pearson (Pitman - 89' )
- 27 Adomah
- 09 Stead
- 22 Gerken
- 12 Wilson
- 08 Kilkenny
- 20 Morris
- 21 Anderson
- 25 Elliott
- 10 Pitman
Live Text Commentary
Full Time The referee signals the end of the game.90:00 +2:53
Foul by Marvin Elliott on Adlene Guedioura, free kick awarded. Lee Camp takes the free kick.90:00 +1:41 Substitution
Substitution Jamaal Lascelles comes on in place of Radoslaw Majewski.88:44 Substitution
Substitution Jonathan Greening joins the action as a substitute, replacing Andy Reid.88:44
Inswinging corner taken by Greg Cunningham.88:44 Substitution
Substitution Stephen Pearson goes off and Brett Pitman comes on.82:09
Corner taken by Mark Wilson from the left by-line to the near post, clearance made by Adlene Guedioura.80:06
The ball is crossed by Paul Anderson, save made by Lee Camp.78:36
Dexter Blackstock produces a left-footed shot from inside the area that goes over the bar.77:27 Substitution
Substitution Paul Anderson on for Martyn Woolford.75:31
Unfair challenge on Andy Reid by Mark Wilson results in a free kick. Shot on goal comes in from Andy Reid from the free kick, save by Tom Heaton. Corner taken by Andy Reid, clearance made by Jon Stead.74:45
Shot from long distance by Andy Reid misses to the right of the target.73:06
The ball is crossed by Dan Harding.72:14
The referee blows for offside. Free kick taken by Lee Camp.70:55
Simon Cox provided the assist for the goal.70:55 Goal scored
Goal! - Adlene Guedioura - Nott'm For 1 - 0 Bristol C Goal scored by Adlene Guedioura from inside the penalty box to the bottom right corner of the goal. Nottm Forest 1-0 Bristol City.70:49 Substitution
Substitution Marvin Elliott replaces Richard Foster.66:34 Substitution
Substitution Lewis McGugan goes off and Simon Cox comes on.66:34
Shot by Radoslaw Majewski from outside the box goes over the target.65:26
Albert Adomah produces a right-footed shot from just outside the box that goes wide left of the target.
Effort from deep inside the area by Jon Stead misses to the right of the goal.61:20
Centre by Albert Adomah, clearance made by Brendan Moloney.58:48
Corner taken by Andy Reid from the right by-line to the near post, save made by Tom Heaton.57:39
Unfair challenge on Brendan Moloney by Martyn Woolford results in a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Lee Camp.56:48
The ball is delivered by Greg Cunningham.55:40
Shot by Andy Reid. Save made by Tom Heaton.54:58
Brendan Moloney has an effort at goal from outside the box which goes wide right of the target.52:16
The ball is sent over by Martyn Woolford, Brendan Moloney gets a block in. Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Mark Wilson from the left by-line to the near post, Header from close in by Jon Stead misses to the right of the goal.51:48
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Richard Foster by Andy Reid. Mark Wilson takes the direct free kick.48:55
The ball is delivered by Albert Adomah, save made by Lee Camp.47:47
Dexter Blackstock is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Indirect free kick taken by Tom Heaton.45:10
Dan Harding concedes a free kick for a foul on Jon Stead. Free kick crossed left-footed by Greg Cunningham from right wing.45:01
The referee gets the second half underway.45:00 +1:10 Half time
Half Time The whistle is blown to end the first half.44:55
Albert Adomah has an effort at goal from 25 yards. Blocked by Simon Gillett. Corner taken left-footed by Greg Cunningham from the right by-line to the near post, clearance by Adlene Guedioura.43:21
Drilled right-footed shot by Jon Stead. Lee Camp makes a save. Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Mark Wilson from the left by-line, Dexter Blackstock makes a clearance.40:43
A cross is delivered by Lewis McGugan, Tom Heaton makes a save.38:33 Booking
Booking Andy Reid is shown a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.38:05 Booking
Booking Greg Cunningham goes into the referee's book.35:05
The ball is crossed by Andy Reid, Header from close in by Dexter Blackstock misses to the left of the target.32:44
Lewis McGugan crosses the ball, blocked by Greg Cunningham. Inswinging corner taken by Andy Reid.31:24
The ball is sent over by Richard Foster, Dan Harding makes a clearance. Martyn Woolford takes a inswinging corner from the right by-line played to the near post, save by Lee Camp.27:42
Corner taken by Mark Wilson from the left by-line. A cross is delivered by Mark Wilson, clearance by Lewis McGugan. Albert Adomah produces a cross.26:18
Albert Adomah takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Save by Lee Camp.24:24
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Cole Skuse by Simon Gillett. Greg Cunningham restarts play with the free kick.22:03
Jon Stead sends in a cross.20:51
The ball is swung over by Martyn Woolford, save made by Lee Camp.16:31
Centre by Adlene Guedioura.8:50
Liam Fontaine fouled by Dexter Blackstock, the ref awards a free kick. Liam Fontaine takes the direct free kick.7:25
Lewis McGugan takes a shot. Louis Carey gets a block in. Corner taken by Andy Reid from the right by-line to the near post, clearance made by Louis Carey. Simon Gillett takes a shot from just inside the penalty box which clears the bar.5:19
Stephen Pearson concedes a free kick for a foul on Simon Gillett. Free kick taken by Adlene Guedioura.2:19
Dexter Blackstock is ruled offside. Tom Heaton takes the free kick.0:00
The match gets underway.
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