Preston looked to apply some early pressure, with Kevin Davies making a run out wide before crossing in for Neil Kilkenny, who was running towards goal. However, Dorus de Vries came off his line to claim the ball.
The home side continued to look stronger than their opponents in the opening 10 minutes, but Forest soon started to attack.
Lee Holmes searched for a teammate outside the box, but decided to take the shot and saw his effort go wide. However, Billy Davies's side were ahead just three minutes later.