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Nottingham Forest logo
FA Cup | Fourth Round Replays
Feb 7, 2024 at 7.45pm UK
The City Ground
Bristol City

Nott'm Forest
1 - 1
Bristol City

Origi (8')
FT
(aet)
Knight (14')
Conway (58')
Nott'm Forest win 5-3 on penalties

Preview: Nottingham Forest vs. Bristol City - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Wednesday's FA Cup clash between Nottingham Forest and Bristol City, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Aiming to make lightning strike twice in FA Cup replays, Nottingham Forest host Bristol City in Wednesday's fourth-round rematch at the City Ground.

Nuno Espirito Santo's men played out a goalless draw with their Championship counterparts at Ashton Gate on January 26, but both sides have previous when it comes to prevailing at the second bite of the cherry.


Match preview

Nottingham Forest manager Nuno Espirito Santo before the match on January 26, 2024© Reuters

A total of 16 shots were fired on the Ashton Gate soil during the original meeting between Nottingham Forest and Bristol City, but neither goalkeeper would end up picking the ball out of the back of the net, and a draw was certainly a fair result upon reflection.

The two outfits matched one another on the possession counters with 50% apiece, and that forgettable contest represents the second game of a four-match winless run for Forest, whose new manager bounce under Santo now appears to have worn off.

Narrow losses to Brentford and Arsenal came either side of their stalemate at Ashton Gate, and Forest would be forced to do it the hard way to take a point away from Bournemouth in Sunday's Premier League contest, where Callum Hudson-Odoi's exquisite curler cancelled out Justin Kluivert's early opener.

Despite playing the final 15 minutes with an extra man as Philip Billing was given a straight red card, Santo's men could not capitalise and remain in a perilous position near the foot of the standings, sitting in 16th place and just two points clear of Everton in the relegation zone.

Arsenal's midweek triumph at the City Ground also condemned the Tricky Trees to a fifth loss from their last seven home contests in all competitions, and while they only made it to round four of the FA Cup by virtue of triumphing over Blackpool in a third-round replay, Bristol City have also shown an affinity for rematches in the early knockings of 2024.

Bristol City manager Liam Manning reacts after the match on January 7, 2024© Reuters

On their latest quest to be crowned FA Cup winners for the very first time, the Robins eliminated Forest's Premier League counterparts West Ham United thanks to a 1-0 replay success at Ashton Gate, a result which saw Liam Manning have the last laugh against his former club.

However, that memorable beating of the Europa Conference League champions represents Bristol City's only win from their last nine matches in all tournaments, as they subsequently shared the spoils with Forest, Watford and Coventry City before playing host to Leeds United in Friday's Championship offering.

While only Wilfried Gnonto made the net ripple at Ashton Gate, the 1-0 scoreline undoubtedly flattered the Robins, who were carved open at will by Daniel Farke's relentless troops and had beleaguered shot-stopper Max O'Leary to thank for keeping the tally down to just a solitary goal.

Sitting in an unremarkable 14th place in the Championship table, Bristol City now endeavour to reach the fifth round of the FA Cup for the fourth time in six seasons, and they have emerged victorious in their last three fourth-round matches since being eliminated by Burnley at this stage in 2016-17.

An uninspiring run of just one win from their last 11 matches away from home will hardly fill the Robins faithful with unbridled optimism, though, and on each of the previous four occasions that they have met Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup, they have been sent packing in all four of them.

Nottingham Forest FA Cup form:


Nottingham Forest form (all competitions):


Bristol City FA Cup form:


Bristol City form (all competitions):


Team News

Nottingham Forest's Callum Hudson-Odoi celebrates scoring their first goal on February 4, 2024© Reuters

Bournemouth midfielder Billing was given his marching orders at the weekend for a nasty challenge on the back of Hudson-Odoi's leg, which the former Chelsea attacker initially tried to shake off, but he was ultimately forced to relinquish his place on the field to Rodrigo Ribeiro.

Whether Hudson-Odoi's wound is severe enough to keep him out of Wednesday's replay remains to be seen, but Forest will definitely be without Divock Origi (groin), as well as Africa Cup of Nations semi-finalists Ola Aina, Willy Boly and Ibrahim Sangare.

Following Senegal's elimination from the tournament, Forest allowed Cheikhou Kouyate to remain close to home following the death of his father, and it is yet to be ascertained whether the midfielder will be back in time for the visit of Bristol City too.

Further blows arrive in the shape of the suspended Nicolas Dominguez and Ryan Yates, long-term hamstring victim Chris Wood and January arrivals Matz Sels, Giovanni Reyna and Ribeiro, none of whom can feature on account of not being registered for the original tie.

While Bristol City have no international absentees to factor in for the replay, Burnley loanee Scott Twine is ineligible to feature, having turned out for Hull City in the third round of the competition before heading south, but the midfielder is struggling with a thigh problem in any case.

Mark Sykes (hamstring) and Rob Atkinson (ACL) are both back in training but should not come into contention for the midweek game either, while Ayman Benarous (ACL) and Kal Naismith (hamstring) are still rehabilitating from their own problems.

Manning is not entirely bereft of options for change, though, and the likes of Taylor Gardner-Hickman and Anis Mehmeti - both of whom started the first meeting with Forest - could be called upon to reinforce the XI.


Nottingham Forest possible starting lineup:
Turner; Montiel, Omobamidele, Felipe, Toffolo; Danilo, Murillo; Elanga, Gibbs-White, Tavares; Awoniyi

Bristol City possible starting lineup:
O'Leary; Tanner, Dickie, Vyner; McCrorie, Gardner-Hickman, James, Pring; Knight, Mehmeti; Conway


SM words green background

We say: Nottingham Forest 1-0 Bristol City

Forest may not be as prolific in the final third as they were during the earliest days of Santo's reign - their attacking display at Ashton Gate certainly left a lot to be desired - and a plethora of fresh selection concens is not what the doctor ordered.

However, faced with a Bristol City side who flatter to deceive on the road and were fortunate to only lose by one against Leeds, Forest could conjure up an identical success over the Robins en route to a glamour fifth-round meeting with Manchester United.


For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.


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Data Pass: [t, fa-cup, odds, 3709135]

How you voted: Nott'm Forest vs Bristol City

Nottingham Forest
75.0%
Draw
13.6%
Bristol City
11.4%
184
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Nottingham Forest's Anthony Elanga celebrates scoring their first goal with Morgan Gibbs-White on November 25, 2023
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