Nottingham Forest kept their Championship play-off hopes alive with a win over struggling Birmingham.

Matt Derbyshire was played through by Jamie Paterson in the second minute and fired in to put the home side ahead.

Forest dominated the first half but failed to add a second as Ben Osborn and David Vaughan shot wide.

Winless wonders

Forest's win over Birmingham gave them their first league win since beating Huddersfield on 11 February.

The home side were almost punished but a Chris Burke shot was deflected wide and keeper Karl Darlow saved a Paul Robinson header as Forest held on.

The victory ended a run of 12 league games without a win for temporary manager Gary Brazil and moved his side to within three points of the top six.

Forest's remaining three games see them visit Leeds and Bournemouth before a home game against Brighton.

For Birmingham, defeat means they lie just a point above the bottom three, although they have a game in hand on most of their rivals.

The visitors could have little complaint at the defeat by Forest, who took an early lead when Derbyshire slotted past advancing keeper Darren Randolph.

Forest had plenty of chances to extend their advantage but failed to do so as Osborn headed over and sent a shot wide, while Derbyshire and Vaughan also sent strikes narrowly off target.

Birmingham improved after the break and Burke crossed for Nikola Zigic only for the striker to head straight at Darlow.

Burke thought he had equalised when he flashed a shot across goal before a deflection took his effort wide.

From the resulting corner, Darlow excellently turned a Robinson header around the post as Forest won their first league game since 11 February.

Nottingham Forest caretaker boss Gary Brazil: "I said weeks ago that it might not take a massive number of points to get you into sixth place and it is proving to be the case.

"If we can get a win at Elland Road, the last two games are going to be very interesting.

"I am really pleased for everyone at the club because this has been a tough period. To get ourselves a win now gives us some momentum, but we have to carry that on now, on Monday afternoon."

Birmingham manager Lee Clark: "We have to dust ourselves down following this, because we have some huge games coming up.

"We have to go again. We need our senior players to step up to the plate.

"It is in our own hands and we have to look after ourselves. We have to produce the goods. We grasped things better in the second half, but we need to do it for entire games."

Lineup, Bookings (4) & Substitutions (6)

Nottingham Forest

  • 01 Darlow
  • 15 Halford
  • 13 Fox Booked
  • 24 Vaughan (Greening - 56' )
  • 16 Lascelles
  • 05 Collins
  • 12 Mackie (Cox - 82' )
  • 37 Peltier Booked
  • 27 Derbyshire (Henderson - 77' )
  • 21 Paterson
  • 38 Osborn

Substitutes

  • 03 Harding
  • 09 Henderson
  • 14 Greening
  • 18 Jara
  • 29 de Vries
  • 31 Cox
  • 39 Abdoun

Birmingham City

  • 01 Randolph
  • 23 Spector
  • 18 Hancox Booked (Macheda - 60' )
  • 17 Reilly
  • 05 Thorpe
  • 04 Robinson Booked
  • 07 Burke
  • 31 Caddis
  • 19 Zigic (Løvenkrands - 74' )
  • 36 Huws
  • 27 Ferguson (Ibe - 45' )

Substitutes

  • 08 Ibe
  • 09 Macheda
  • 10 Howard
  • 11 Løvenkrands
  • 13 Doyle
  • 14 Packwood
  • 22 Shinnie
Ref: Mike Jones
Att: 21,300

Match Stats

Shots

12 9

On target

3 2

Corners

2 7

Fouls

19 8

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Nottingham Forest 1, Birmingham City 0.

90:00 +4:07 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Nottingham Forest 1, Birmingham City 0.

90:00 +3:20

Attempt missed. Darius Henderson (Nottingham Forest) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Lee Peltier with a headed pass.

90:00 +1:50

Offside, Nottingham Forest. Simon Cox tries a through ball, but Jamie Paterson is caught offside.

90:00 +1:26

Attempt blocked. Jamie Paterson (Nottingham Forest) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Daniel Fox.

90:00 +0:03 Booking

Booking Paul Robinson (Birmingham City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

89:54

Ben Osborn (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

89:54

Foul by Paul Robinson (Birmingham City).

89:17

Foul by Simon Cox (Nottingham Forest).

89:17

Jonathan Spector (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

88:15 Booking

Booking Daniel Fox (Nottingham Forest) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

87:33

Foul by Daniel Fox (Nottingham Forest).

87:33

Chris Burke (Birmingham City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

86:35

Foul by Lee Peltier (Nottingham Forest).

86:35

Emyr Huws (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

84:19

Offside, Nottingham Forest. Jamie Paterson tries a through ball, but Darius Henderson is caught offside.

83:48

Attempt blocked. Peter Løvenkrands (Birmingham City) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

81:55 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Nottingham Forest. Simon Cox replaces Jamie Mackie.

81:24

Hand ball by Chris Burke (Birmingham City).

81:20

Attempt blocked. Chris Burke (Birmingham City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

80:52

Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Karl Darlow.

80:49

Attempt saved. Paul Robinson (Birmingham City) header from the right side of the six yard box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Jordon Ibe with a cross.

80:29

Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Daniel Fox.

78:50

Offside, Birmingham City. Tom Thorpe tries a through ball, but Federico Macheda is caught offside.

76:18 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Nottingham Forest. Darius Henderson replaces Matt Derbyshire.

75:36

Foul by Jamie Paterson (Nottingham Forest).

75:36

Chris Burke (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

74:23

Dangerous play by Jamie Paterson (Nottingham Forest).

74:23

Paul Robinson (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

73:18

Foul by Daniel Fox (Nottingham Forest).

73:18

Peter Løvenkrands (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

73:09 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Birmingham City. Peter Løvenkrands replaces Nikola Zigic.

69:18

Attempt saved. Nikola Zigic (Birmingham City) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Tom Thorpe with a cross.

66:57

Lee Peltier (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick on the right wing.

66:57

Foul by Emyr Huws (Birmingham City).

64:02

Foul by Matt Derbyshire (Nottingham Forest).

64:02

Paul Robinson (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

60:33

Attempt missed. Jordon Ibe (Birmingham City) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Chris Burke.

59:01 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Birmingham City. Federico Macheda replaces Mitch Hancox.

58:27

Jamaal Lascelles (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

58:27

Foul by Nikola Zigic (Birmingham City).

57:44

Foul by Matt Derbyshire (Nottingham Forest).

57:44

Mitch Hancox (Birmingham City) wins a free kick on the left wing.

55:16 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Nottingham Forest. Jonathan Greening replaces David Vaughan.

54:27

Foul by Ben Osborn (Nottingham Forest).

54:27

Chris Burke (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

52:12

Attempt missed. Matt Derbyshire (Nottingham Forest) right footed shot from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Jamie Paterson with a headed pass following a fast break.

52:04

Attempt saved. Jamie Paterson (Nottingham Forest) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Greg Halford.

51:35

Attempt blocked. Emyr Huws (Birmingham City) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked.

50:57

Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Danny Collins.

49:24

Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Daniel Fox.

48:48

Foul by Matt Derbyshire (Nottingham Forest).

48:48

Paul Caddis (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

47:38

Offside, Nottingham Forest. Jamie Paterson tries a through ball, but Matt Derbyshire is caught offside.

45:00

Second Half begins Nottingham Forest 1, Birmingham City 0.

45:00 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Birmingham City. Jordon Ibe replaces Shane Ferguson.

45:00 +2:20 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Nottingham Forest 1, Birmingham City 0.

45:00 +1:15

Attempt missed. Nikola Zigic (Birmingham City) header from a difficult angle on the left is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Emyr Huws with a cross following a corner.

45:00 +0:23

Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Danny Collins.

44:39

Foul by David Vaughan (Nottingham Forest).

44:39

Paul Robinson (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

43:27

Jamie Mackie (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

43:27

Foul by Jonathan Spector (Birmingham City).

41:14

Matt Derbyshire (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

41:14

Foul by Paul Robinson (Birmingham City).

40:14

Foul by Daniel Fox (Nottingham Forest).

40:14

Emyr Huws (Birmingham City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

39:58

Attempt blocked. Paul Caddis (Birmingham City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

39:03

Foul by Jamaal Lascelles (Nottingham Forest).

39:03

Nikola Zigic (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

38:31

Offside, Nottingham Forest. Jamaal Lascelles tries a through ball, but Jamie Mackie is caught offside.

35:29

Attempt missed. David Vaughan (Nottingham Forest) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Ben Osborn.

33:38

Corner, Nottingham Forest. Conceded by Nikola Zigic.

32:35

Corner, Nottingham Forest. Conceded by Tom Thorpe.

31:30

Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Danny Collins.

31:25

Attempt blocked. Chris Burke (Birmingham City) right footed shot from long range on the right is blocked. Assisted by Callum Reilly.

28:29

Attempt missed. Ben Osborn (Nottingham Forest) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by David Vaughan.

27:23

Attempt missed. Matt Derbyshire (Nottingham Forest) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

25:36

Attempt missed. Matt Derbyshire (Nottingham Forest) right footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Ben Osborn.

25:06

Foul by Jamie Mackie (Nottingham Forest).

25:06

Jonathan Spector (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

24:53

Attempt blocked. Jamie Paterson (Nottingham Forest) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ben Osborn.

23:07

Attempt saved. Daniel Fox (Nottingham Forest) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

22:05

Jamie Paterson (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

22:05

Foul by Tom Thorpe (Birmingham City).

20:14

Offside, Nottingham Forest. Ben Osborn tries a through ball, but Jamie Mackie is caught offside.

19:40 Booking

Booking Mitch Hancox (Birmingham City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

19:30

Jamie Mackie (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick on the left wing.

19:30

Foul by Mitch Hancox (Birmingham City).

18:27 Booking

Booking Lee Peltier (Nottingham Forest) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

18:23

Foul by Lee Peltier (Nottingham Forest).

18:23

Paul Caddis (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

17:43

Attempt missed. Ben Osborn (Nottingham Forest) header from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Matt Derbyshire with a cross.

17:18

Foul by Matt Derbyshire (Nottingham Forest).

17:18

Paul Robinson (Birmingham City) wins a free kick on the left wing.

7:19

Foul by Lee Peltier (Nottingham Forest).

7:19

Emyr Huws (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

4:28

Foul by Matt Derbyshire (Nottingham Forest).

4:28

Paul Robinson (Birmingham City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

2:49

Corner, Birmingham City. Conceded by Daniel Fox.

1:39 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Nottingham Forest 1, Birmingham City 0. Matt Derbyshire (Nottingham Forest) right footed shot from the right side of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Jamie Paterson with a through ball.

0:28

Shane Ferguson (Birmingham City) wins a free kick on the left wing.

0:28

Foul by David Vaughan (Nottingham Forest).

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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