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Steve Cotterill ‘proud’ of Forest Green display in draw with Wrexham

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 27 Feb 2024

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Boss Steve Cotterill praised his side’s ‘magnificent’ performance after Forest Green conceded a stoppage-time equaliser to draw 1-1 with promotion-chasing Wrexham.

Emmanuel Osadebe’s third-minute strike looked to have given second-from-bottom Rovers a third win in four but Paul Mullin’s penalty in the closing stages gave the visitors a point.

Cotterill said: “I’m proud of the performance. They’re not silky but they are honest, hard-working, disciplined performances.”

Forest Green made a lightning start to the game as Osadebe exchanged a neat one-two with Christian Doidge before he slotted home a curling effort past Wrexham goalkeeper Arthur Okonkwo on three minutes.

Kyle McAllister then drove into space and delivered a cross for Doidge, who headed goalwards but Okonkwo parried around the post.

Mullin teed up Elliot Lee on the edge of the area but his effort was wayward and blazed over the crossbar.

Wrexham’s interplay on the edge of the Forest Green penalty area saw Andy Cannon shift a yard of space but his effort was pouched by goalkeeper Vicente Reyes.

Reyes was forced into a smart save when Rovers defender Richard Keogh diverted towards his own goal but the Norwich loanee parried out for a corner.

Forest Green were inches away from doubling their lead when Charlie McCann’s deflected effort bounced just past the far post.

Wrexham continued to press for an equaliser and Mullin had two long-distance efforts in as many minutes but Reyes wasn’t forced into action.

Luke Bolton delivered a low cross for substitute Jack Marriott but he only slammed into the side netting.

However, Jamie Robson brought down Mullin in stoppage time and he made no mistake from the spot to rescue a point for the visitors.

Cotterill continued: “I think the penalty is harsh.

“At the time it comes, it’s a real kick in the teeth but it’s another point on the board and it could be very important come the end of the season.

“We’d restricted them – and hopefully we’ve eradicated a few problems that we had when I first came in.

“We need to become better on the ball on turnover but they’ve been brilliant since I’ve come in.”

Wrexham boss Phil Parkinson was relieved to leave with a point.

He said: “When teams have that early lead and drop the players back, it’s hard to break down.

“We struggled to work the goalkeeper enough – the structure was right, we just couldn’t find that bit of quality.

“We kept going. We never hid from the ball, it didn’t always come off for us but there was no lack of trying.

“We got that moment and it could be an important point.

“We’re having a moment where we’re not producing but that will come. We need something like that penalty to get us running.”

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