Wolves 1 (Dicko 62)
Nottingham Forest 0
It was hard earned but Wolves just about deserved the three points from a tight contest with Nottingham Forest with Nouha Dicko’s goal helping stretch the winning run to five games.
Paul Lambert had named an unchanged side for the visit of Forest but Helder Costa was injured in the pre-match warm up and he was replaced by Dicko who was originally named as a substitute.
Wolves kicked-off attacking the North Bank end and the first real chance of the game fell their way in the tenth minute. Conor Coady’s cross was knocked into the path of Ivan Cavaliero who spread the ball out wide to Matt Doherty.
Cavaliero was in position for a return pass but he didn’t make a clean connection with the ball and Jordan Smith in the Forest goal made a comfortable save.
Andy Lonergan had to get down at his near post to turn behind Britt Assombalonga’s angled drive with Danny Batth heading clear Ben Osborn’s corner.
Andi Weimann was wide with a shot on the turn from the edge of the box and then David Vaughan was inches away from putting through his own goal after a low cross from Cavaleiro.
Lee Evans tried his luck with a volley from 30-yards that dipped, but not quite enough, then Dicko was much closer with a first time near post shot that was just the wrong side of the woodwork after a low, driven cross from Doherty.
Armand Traore’s tackle on Dicko on the by-line in the Forest area saw the striker going down and the referee ignoring the penalty appeals that followed.
Cavaliero’s long-range drive was safely pouched by Smith before a half of few clear cut openings drew to a close.
Half-Time: Wolves 0 Forest 0
Chris Cohen’s shove on Dave Edwards gave Wolves a free-kick in a central position 30-yards out. Marshall took it and he was only just off target with an excellent attempt.
Danny Fox went into the book for deliberately obstructing Dicko’s sprint down the right flank but the striker’s face was all smiles as he gave Wolves a 62nd minute advantage.
The goal came seconds after Forest had almost taken the lead themselves. A Marshall corner was cleared down field to Assombalonga who sent Ben Brereton away on the right.
When Zach Clough, Cavaleiro and Lonergan all went for Brereton’s low cross, the loose ball squirmed into the path of Assombalonga whose shot was brilliantly cleared off the line by Coady. The clearance went straight into the arms of the grateful Lonergan.
This time it was Wolves’ turn to break. Doherty laid a perfect pass into the path of Weimann and his short cross ran to Dicko who jubilantly converted from close range (pictured).
Forest made a double substitution in the 66th minute with Jamie Ward and Mushtapha Carayol taking over from Assombalonga and Osborn.
And the switch almost resulted in an instant dividend for the visitors as Ward met Carayol’s cross on the volley to draw a great save from Lonergan.
Morgan Gibbs-White replaced Cavaleiro in the 67th minute and seconds later Batth went into the book for attempting to win the ball as Smith was trying to clear.
Weimann showed a touch of class as he took the ball past a defender and unleashed a curling shot that was inches wide of the far post.
After Edwards had been cautioned for a late challenge on Clough, Dicko and Marshall left the field to be replaced by Jon Dadi Bodvarsson and Romain Saiss.
Bodvarsson was soon involved with a low cross that was cut out by Smith who, in the 82nd minute saved a driven effort from the striker.
The Icelander had another shot saved in stoppage time when Weimann was waiting unmarked for a pass, before Forest’s misery was completed when Fox was shown a second yellow after clattering into Gibbs-White.
Wolves: Lonergan, Doherty, Coady, Edwards, Batth (capt), Hause, Dicko (Bodvarsson 77), Evans, Cavaliero (Gibbs-White 67), Weimann, Marshall (Saiss 77).
Unused subs: Burgoyne, Saville, Price, Bodvarsson, Saiss, Gibbs-White, Williamson.
Bookings: Batth (68 – foul) Edwards (76 – foul).
Forest: Smith, Mancienne, Mills, Traore, Cohen (capt), Assombalonga (Ward 65), Osborn (Carayol 65), Fox, Clough, Vaughan, Brereton (Vellios 79).
Unused subs: Evtimov, Lichaj, Tshibola, Vellios, Cash.
Bookings: Fox (56 – obstruction, 90+3 - foul).
Sending-Off: Fox (90+3 – second bookable offence)
Referee: J. Linington.