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Nottingham Forest v Everton: Premier League – live | Premier League

Nottingham Forest v Everton: Premier League – live | Premier League

Key events

61 min: Everton remain camped in Forest’s half. Literally camped in their half? No, they’ve not yet pitched a tent and fired up the gas stove, but they are having all the ball and most of the territory.

Forest are standing firm, though, and they reduce Beto to an optimistic effort from the edge of the box. It’s another awful attempt: he never looks remotely likely to trouble the scorers with a shot that balloons high and well, well wide.

59 min: Forest are firmly on the back foot. Which means, you see, that Everton are firmly on the front foot.

On the telly they replay the Doucoure pull on Yates, which does very much look like a foul.

58 min: “At risk of putting a hex on the Toffees, I reckon they’ve enough skill, style, and panache to get a stomp on and move to safety by end of February,” emails Bill. “They’re used to these thrilling heroics at the wrong end of the table, but have enough about them to grind these games out better than those above them. It isn’t too far a gap. There’s going to be Premiership football at Bramley Dock when it’s finished.”

55 min: Felipe is booked for a cynical pull on McNeil. Young bangs the free-kick goalwards but Yates jumps up in the wall and clears with his bonce.

53 min: Yates sprays a pass out to Gibbs-White on the right. Forest continue to lack any real cutting edge in attack but the former Wolves player does well to win a corner despite being isolated. There is a scramble in the penalty area, with Elanga hitting a shot from the far post, and then Felipe drilling a shot which cannons out and away off the outside of a post! VAR is checking for a penalty after a pull by Doucoure on Yates as the ball came over … it looks to be very much in “seen them given” territory, but the VAR says nothing doing.

49 min: Elanga wins another free-kick for Forest on their left wing. Gibbs-White to take. It’s a brilliant delivery, whipped with pace into the six-yard box, but Branthwaite meets it with an equally excellent defensive header and Everton can clear.

48 min: Forest’s central midfielders are not snapping into tackles with the same enthusiasm as Everton’s. In addition, they look relatively disjointed when they do win possession, while Everton are showing glimpses of attacking fluidity.

46 min: The Forest fans, warmed by their half-time Bovril, are in fine voice at the start of the second half. But can the team really give them something to sing about?

Second-half kick-off!

Willy Boly off, Felipe on for Forest at half-time.

Half time! Nottingham Forest 0-0 Everton

At the top of their broadcast, Sky Sports informed us that Forest last beat Everton at the City Ground in 1995. That winless run looks set to continue at this rate …

45 min + 4: Forest have a rare sight of goal – Sangare lays off to Gibbs-White, who chooses to go with power and aim for the near post. But he gets it wrong and the ball flies wide. Everton then have another chance when a ball ricochets off a Forest body. Doucoure is bearing down on goal but overhits a pass, and that’s the lot for the first half.

45 min +2: Actually, in the live table, Everton are second-bottom. If this stays 0-0, the point would put them above Sheffield United, who have a ludicrous goal difference of -28.

45 min: We’ll have five minutes of added time at the end of the first half. Forest could very easily be two or three down. Everton are bottom of the table but they don’t look like a side particularly short on confidence. To observe their league position belies their performances, in view of that 10-point penalty, is literally true.

43 min: Whoah! Forest have possession and are moving forward but they lose it around halfway, and the defence is all at sea. Doucoure does well to control the ball in a central spot, just outside the penalty area, and then lay it off to McNeil, who is running into lots of space on the Everton left. McNeil is in: he takes a touch and promptly clumps a low left-footed shot which is flying into the open net, beyond a helpless Vlachodimos … but Murillo gets back to pull off miraculous clearance off the goal line, which kisses the post on its way out!

Nottingham Forest’s Murillo clears the ball off the line following a shot from Everton’s Dwight McNeil. Photograph: Carl Recine/Reuters

40 min: Aurier launches an expansive diagonal pass across the pitch to Elanga, who almost brings it under his spell, but narrowly fails and Everton can break. Boly has to slide in awkwardly to intercept a pass looking for Beto, and now he looks like he might have injured himself too, like his defensive colleague Murillo moments earlier. The score is still 0-0.

37 min: Murillo of Forest tries to whip the home crowd up, and manages to raise a cheer or two. Considering the pressure they were under for a good part of this half, Cooper’s side will be pretty happy to go in for half-time level. But Everton get on the move again, McNeill whipping a cross over from the left. Murillo heads it clear but appears to slightly twang something in the process and limps away from the scene.

33 min: Alan Tate, the Forest assistant manager, is booked – I think for encroaching outside the technical area.

“As someone with no dog in the fight, I do not understand the pressure on Cooper,” emails Joe Pearson. “Given what he did last season, he should be considered a miracle worker. The team that started in the Premier League was nearly completely overhauled from the one he won promotion with.”

30 min: Elanga shows a touch of composure and class to put his foot on the ball, cut back away from Young, and cross from the Forest left into the penalty area. The hosts keep the attack going, with Aurier involved again on the opposite flank after Sangare tries a cute little flick in the middle. The ball eventually comes back to Elanga after he started the move, and he cracks a first-time shot which flashes just wide of the far post. Better from Forest.

28 min: Aurier looks to play a short pass inside to Sangare, but the Ivory Coast international is crowded out by banks of Everton defenders. Forest have not had a shot on target.

27 min: Forest have a rare glimpse of the Everton penalty area. Elanga floats a harmless cross in which is snaffled comfortably by Pickford. This is turning into a very unconvincing performance by Forest – Everton look hungrier and are winning most if not all of the 50-50s.

26 min: England have been drawn with Denmark, Slovenia and Serbia at Euro 2024. Scotland have Germany, Hungary and Switzerland.

23 min: A long ball is pumped down the middle of Forest’s increasingly creaky defence. Vlachodimos comes out to meet it but flaps at it with McNeil challenging him. As a result the keeper is nowhere when the ball drops nicely to Beto, around the penalty spot, who could choose to pass the ball into either corner of the net. He does sidefoot it – but gets underneath it – and lifts it high over the crossbar. A horrible effort, and a lucky escape for Forest – it should be 1-0.

Everton's Beto reacts to a missed chance.
Everton’s Beto knows he should have done better. Photograph: Nick Potts/PA

21 min: Another free-kick for Everton. Another short routine, another header won at the far post by Tarkowski. Elanga appears to brush the bouncing ball with his hand a couple of seconds later, and the Everton fans wail for a penalty, but nothing doing.

19 min: Forest had a nice little spell early doors but the match is now being played largely in their half. Boly is penalised for a sturdy challenge on Dwight McNeil. The resulting free-kick is taken short but is then worked into the Forest box, where Tarkowski wins an old-school header from a looping delivery. Branthwaite tries to lash a shot towards goal after Tarkowski creates it but misses the ball.

18 min: An email from Charlie – “I was reflecting on Everton’s situation after their defeat by Manchester United, and concluded that if they allow their anger over the (in my humble opinion, deserved) points deduction to totally consume them, they’re simply going to fatally distract themselves from the job of winning points.

“As a Derby fan, I completely understand their antipathy towards the authorities, but the constant pantomime booing of every decision and the silly “corrupt” posters was just too much. Perhaps the ire of the fans would be better directed at the profligate and incompetent owners that have landed them in this situation, rather than the Premier League jobsworths and bean counters.”

16 min: A somewhat comical passage of play unfolds in the Forest area. The ball bounces around seemingly aimlessly for a while with no one able to control it. Everton get it, mess up a simple one-two, but Forest give it back to them for another try. Harrison tries to bend a cross to the far post but skews it out high and wide for a goal kick.

15 min: Young crosses from the Everton right, looking for Beto. Forest’s defence is suddenly under a bit of pressure. They deal with it for now.

13 min: A break in play when Wood, the forward, goes down injured for Forest after tangling with Jarrad Branthwaite. There is movement on the bench but it looks like Wood is going to try and run it off. Looks like he twisted his left leg slightly but think he’ll be OK.

10 min: Elanga, as predicted by Eric from Pittsburgh below, has Young on toast down the Forest left. Maybe not quite toast, but certainly lightly grilled. They are shoulder to shoulder but Young is losing the battle and he feels obliged to foul his opponent, lest he show him a clean pair of boots, and Forest have a free-kick in a very handy spot. The set-piece is bent over into the six-yard box but flicked away and clear.

9 min: Elanga loses it for Forest and Everton are quickly on the attack. However, Elanga shows good energy and effort to track back and force the ball out. Corner to Everton, which is flapped at by Vlachodimos. But Forest get away with it and clear.

8 min: “Given that we are celebrating 60 years of Dr Who (I am old enough to have watched the first episode live) let’s time travel back to the 80s, a decade, yes a decade without a Manchester engraving on the trophy,” emails Jeremy Boyce. “It was all Paisley, Clough and yes, Harvey. Great to see Forest and Everton tussling it out again, albeit at the wrong end of the table. Great that Forest have stayed loyal to Steve, fingers crossed for him. Great that Toffees have Dyche who will steel them for the challenges ahead. As a neutral (actually a Leeds fan, let’s not go into that…) a draw would seem to be a fair result, which would actually suit neither of them. May the better team win!”

6 min: Aurier is causing bother down the right for Forest. He slides a pass to Gibbs-White, who gets to the byline and hangs a cross up to the far post. But it’s a “bit too floaty”, as the Sky co-commentator rightly points out. There were several Forest bodies on the scene, however.

Nottingham Forest's Serge Aurier in action with Everton's Vitaliy Mykolenko.
Nottingham Forest’s Serge Aurier tussles with Everton’s Vitaliy Mykolenko. Photograph: Carl Recine/Reuters

3 min: Chris Wood, the former Burnley man, brings a roar from the Forest faithful when he sprints to try and gather a ball down the right channel for Forest. But he can’t get close to it. Aurier soon bends a cross from the same side, looking for Wood again, but Tarkowski clears with his noggin.

2 min: Harrison half-volleys a through ball down the middle in the direction of Doucoure, who has made a good run and rushed beyond the Forest back line. And indeed he’s flagged offside when he gets on the end of it. There’s been quite a bit of putting-your-foot-through-it from both defences in the early skirmishes.

First half kick off!

Forest get things moving at a noisy City Ground.

The teams are literally out on the pitch! This is happening.

“Hello from Pittsburgh!” emails Eric Peterson. “No better way for a Toffee on this side of the pond to start the day than to see keeper-turned-analyst Tim Howard informed live on air in the US broadcast studio that he’s been tapped for the US Soccer Hall of Fame.

“What a representative of the game, his country, and every club team he’s ever suited up for. Now if we can only see his 16-save heroics against Belgium in the World Cup replicated by Jordan Pickford as Ashley Young gets torched again and again by Anthony Elanga on the Forest left wing. Gulp.”

It feels like a big game … I’ve got a feeling we’ll have some goals tonight,” opines Redknapp on Sky.

Redknapp’s fellow pundit Izzy Christiansen, meanwhile, tells Kelly Cates it’s an interesting one tactically: she thinks that Morgan Gibbs-White will be drifting infield and looking to disrupt Dychey’s classic 4-4-2.

“The Brentford”, meanwhile, defeated Luton 3-1:

“The Arsenal” beat Wolves 2-1:

Burnley won 5-0, which is not something you see every day:

A rainbow armband for Ryan Yates, to mark Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces campaign.

“A key focus of the partnership with Stonewall encourages LGBT+ acceptance among children and young people involved in community and education initiatives,” says the Premier League.

A mere 10 minutes until kick-off. Want to share your thoughts? Email me.

Everton fans hold signs in protest against the Premier League during the match following Everton's points deduction in the Premier League.
Everton fans share their thoughts on the Premier League following the Toffee’s points deduction. Photograph: Carl Recine/Reuters

Steve Cooper also has a chat with Sky Sports: “Ibrahim (Sangare) wasn’t available the last couple of weeks. He’s been ill. We’ve got an illness with Danilo this week as well so that’s made it easier (to make the decision about selection) … The journey’s been positive and we’ve got to keep that going. It’s difficult, to make it another successful season … but handling setbacks like last week is what makes you stronger. This occasion, this atmosphere, is why we’ve worked so hard over the last couple of years.”

Sean Dyche, the Everton manager, speaks to Sky Sports: “Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s got a minor situation with his calf. The expectation (at Everton) is about our performances, and not to be worried about the noise, as I call it … I think this season we’ve shown a strong shift forward in our mentality … it’s really important that we keep focusing on performances.”

Steve Cooper’s tenure at Nottingham Forest has been a rollercoaster, with sporadic speculation over his future. Last season, Sean Dyche, out of work after being sacked by Burnley, was touted to make a return to the club where he was an apprentice under Brian Clough. Now, as speculation again begins to circle Cooper, Dyche is at Everton. Dyche’s team’s response to their 10-point penalty in last week’s match with Manchester United managed to be both impressive in the first half and submissive in the second. Forest meanwhile came off worst in a bad-tempered defeat by Brighton after which Cooper’s complaints about refereeing failed to draw a fig leaf over a poor defensive performance. For now, local reports have Cooper retaining the “full support” of Forest’s owner, Evangelos Marinakis, but Dyche’s team dragging his old club down may swiftly alter that situation. John Brewin

Nothing changes – we’ve just got to win games – that will be the message.”

Jamie Redknapp on Sky Sports there, analysing Sean Dyche’s approach to that 10-point penalty. Thank you for that.


Four changes for Forest: Serge Aurier, Ibrahim Sangare and Willy Boly come into the side, along with Ryan Yates, who takes the captain’s armband.

One change to the lineup for Everton – Dominic Calvert-Lewin is out with a “minor situation with his calf”, so Beto comes in up front. The Portuguese forward, who was signed from Udinese, has eight appearances thus far but no goals to speak of.

Nottm Forest: Vlachodimos, Aurier, Boly, Murillo, Toffolo, Sangare, Mangala, Yates, Gibbs-White, Wood, Elanga. Substitutes: Turner, Williams, Kouyate, Hudson-Odoi, Dominguez, Felipe, Niakhate, Origi, Aina.

Everton: Pickford, Young, Tarkowski, Branthwaite, Mykolenko, Harrison, Garner, Gueye, McNeil, Doucoure, Beto. Substitutes: Patterson, Keane, Danjuma, Virginia, Godfrey, Coleman, Chermiti, Hunt, Dobbin.

Referee: Paul Tierney (Lancashire)

“Dom’s got a minor situation with his calf. After the (injury problems) of the last couple of years he’s done very well more recently with a good run of games and fitness. We had to make a judgement call but Beto comes in for his chance. Let’s see what he can do for us.”

— Everton (@Everton) December 2, 2023

Andy Hunter

Andy Hunter

Everton have formally appealed against the decision to deduct the club 10 points for a breach of Premier League profit and sustainability rules, with the outcome expected in the new year.

Burnley have just gone 3-0 up against the Blades, so we can officially say that Everton are bottom of the table going into this 5.30 KO against Forest.

Scott Murray has the clockwatch here with all the 3pm kick-offs about to conclude.

And now it’s 4-0 Burnley! Everton are even more bottom than they were a minute ago!


Both of these teams are in the news but not much of it is good. Everton fans hoping for some kind of financial-penalty bounce instead got a 3-0 beating from Manchester United last weekend. Meanwhile speculation continues to swirl around the future of Steve Cooper, the Forest manager, with a paltry three Premier League wins on the board as the countdown to Christmas begins in earnest.

Everton have four in the “W” column, but thanks to a 10-point deduction for financial irregularities combined with Burnley’s impending success against Sheffield United, they sit rooted to the bottom of the table on four points.

Forest, meanwhile, are 15th, nine points above today’s opponents. Boasting a defence that’s recently been flakier than a yule log, they would appear to be prime candidates to be dragged down towards the mire by Sean Dyche’s industrious outfit.

Thrills and spills are in store on the banks of the River Trent in this festive relegation six-pointer. Certainly spills, anyway, hopefully with the odd thrill thrown in. Team news and more to follow.

Kick-off: 5.30pm

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