Championship
Nottm ForestNottingham Forest0Sheff WedSheffield Wednesday4

Nottingham Forest 0-4 Sheffield Wednesday: Jordan Rhodes hat-trick sets Owls up for victory

Jordan Rhodes completes his hat-trick with overhead kick for Sheffield Wednesday
Jordan Rhodes scored a hat-trick in what was just his second league start of the season

Jordan Rhodes ended a 20-month wait for a Sheffield Wednesday goal with a hat-trick at Nottingham Forest that lifted the Owls into the play-off places.

Rhodes, who scored nine goals to help Norwich to the Championship title last season after being sent out on loan, put Wednesday in front early on with a fine left-footed finish into the bottom corner.

While it took 87 weeks for the long out-of-favour striker to get back on the scoresheet for the Owls, having last netted on 14 April 2018, it took just four minutes for him to score the second of the day, heading home from close range.

He completed his treble with a spectacular overhead kick before Steven Fletcher stabbed home a fourth in first-half injury time as Wednesday extended Forest's winless run to four games in devastating fashion.

Wednesday's third win in a five-game unbeaten run was never under threat in a relatively subdued second half at the City Ground, which saw Garry Monk's side move up to fifth in the table, while the Reds slipped from fifth to eighth.

Rhodes, Wednesday's record signing who first arrived at Hillsborough in January 2017, scored his stunning first-half hat-trick in what was just his second Championship start of the season. He was handed his first in their 1-1 midweek draw at Derby, having come off the bench five times before that in the league.

'Hard work paid off for Rhodes'

Monk said everyone at Wednesday "knew he had quality" and praised Rhodes for setting up the Yorkshire club's ninth win from 10 games against Forest.

"In the last couple of seasons and into this season, it has been tough for him," said Monk.

"But I spoke to him when I came in and I just asked him for hard work. I understand what he is, but he has had to be patient.

"I told him he would get his opportunity and, when that opportunity came, that his hard work would pay off.

"He just needed to keep his confidence and belief. I know it has been tough for him, he has had to work his way back in. But he trained to a high level and he has shown his personality.

"This was an accumulation of everything for him. A fantastic performance and three great goals for him."

A long ball flicked on by Fletcher set Rhodes up for the opener, and the Scotland international met an Adam Reach cross to nod home his second before Ben Watson wastefully blasted Forest's best chance of a reply over from six yards.

It was a huge missed opportunity from the hosts, but the Reds also had appeals for a penalty for a handball waved away before it got worse for Sabri Lamouchi's side.

The way Rhodes acrobatically completed his hat-trick gave the impression he was a man full of confidence, rather than an almost forgotten figure.

There was still time in the first half for Fletcher to keep his fine run of scoring form going, prodding home his seventh goal in six games, as Forest conceded four goals at home before the break in a league game for the first time since August 1996.

Rhodes was mobbed by team-mates as the teams walked off at half-time, while Forest players were booed off by supporters, with a number of fans also choosing to leave at the break.

The first-half salvo was enough to guarantee Wednesday all three points without needing to press for more goals after the interval, and while Forest did threaten after the break - Joao Carvalho going close before Sammy Ameobi had a shot deflected wide - they failed to find a consolation.

'Forest cannot accept this'

Nottingham Forest manager Lamouchi said he was "the only one responsible" for the manner of defeat.

"I want to apologise about this big defeat, in front of our fans," he told BBC Radio Nottingham. "It is a big disappointment for me, for the players, for the fans and their families.

"At the beginning of the season our quality was our defensive aspect. Today it was our big weakness, because we gave them four easy goals and it might have been more. Fortunately it was not.

"I am very surprised. I am shocked. I am ashamed of this performance. This is my first time apologising to Forest fans and I hope it is the last. We cannot accept this."

Line-ups

Nottm Forest

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 30Samba
  • 11Cash
  • 20Dawson
  • 4Worrall
  • 18Robinson
  • 22Yates
  • 8Watson
  • 19Ameobi
  • 28Silva
  • 10Carvalho
  • 7Grabban

Substitutes

  • 3Figueiredo
  • 14Mir
  • 17Semedo
  • 23Lolley
  • 36Chema
  • 37Adomah
  • 49Muric

Sheff Wed

Formation 4-4-2

  • 25Dawson
  • 2Palmer
  • 27Iorfa
  • 15LeesSubstituted forBörnerat 78'minutes
  • 3Fox
  • 20Reach
  • 21Luongo
  • 10Bannan
  • 7K Harris
  • 6RhodesSubstituted forWinnallat 87'minutes
  • 9FletcherSubstituted forNuhiuat 81'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Westwood
  • 8Pelupessy
  • 11Winnall
  • 13Börner
  • 14Murphy
  • 17Nuhiu
  • 29Hunt
Referee:
James Linington
Attendance:
28,002

Match Stats

Home TeamNottm ForestAway TeamSheff Wed
Possession
Home58%
Away42%
Shots
Home10
Away16
Shots on Target
Home3
Away6
Corners
Home4
Away4
Fouls
Home6
Away12

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Corner, Nottingham Forest. Conceded by Massimo Luongo.

  2. Post update

    Match ends, Nottingham Forest 0, Sheffield Wednesday 4.

  3. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Nottingham Forest 0, Sheffield Wednesday 4.

  4. Post update

    Ryan Yates (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  5. Post update

    Foul by Atdhe Nuhiu (Sheffield Wednesday).

  6. Post update

    Attempt missed. Sam Winnall (Sheffield Wednesday) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Kadeem Harris.

  7. Post update

    Foul by Michael Dawson (Nottingham Forest).

  8. Post update

    Atdhe Nuhiu (Sheffield Wednesday) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  9. Post update

    Corner, Sheffield Wednesday. Conceded by Brice Samba.

  10. Post update

    Attempt saved. Sam Winnall (Sheffield Wednesday) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Barry Bannan.

  11. Substitution

    Substitution, Sheffield Wednesday. Sam Winnall replaces Jordan Rhodes.

  12. Post update

    Michael Dawson (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  13. Post update

    Foul by Atdhe Nuhiu (Sheffield Wednesday).

  14. Post update

    Tiago Silva (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  15. Post update

    Foul by Atdhe Nuhiu (Sheffield Wednesday).

  16. Substitution

    Substitution, Sheffield Wednesday. Atdhe Nuhiu replaces Steven Fletcher.

  17. Substitution

    Substitution, Sheffield Wednesday. Julian Börner replaces Tom Lees because of an injury.

  18. Post update

    Corner, Nottingham Forest. Conceded by Morgan Fox.

  19. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Sammy Ameobi (Nottingham Forest) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Matthew Cash.

  20. Post update

    Foul by Jack Robinson (Nottingham Forest).