Taiwo Awoniyi scored a first half goal to give Nottingham Forest their first win in the league and end the club’s 23-year Premier League goal drought.
Signed from Union Berlin for £17.5 this summer, Awoniyi provided the threats Steve Cooper’s men lacked against Newcastle in their first Premier League game since May 1999, losing by 2-0.
It was an eventful evening in front of over 29,000 fans at the City Ground, Nottingham. With the home fans cheering every ball touched by ‘The Tricky Reds.’
Forest started the game on the front foot and came close to opening the scoring in many occasions. They harried West Ham effectively, but the visitors’ top-flight pedigree often showed in the first half, as Dean Henderson thwarted Saïd Benrahma’s effort, before Harry Toffolo was forced to scoop the ball off the line, denying a lurking Tomáš Souček, who had the goal at his mercy.
Nine minutes into the restart of the second half, Forest fans thought they’ve doubled the lead when Brennan Johnson found the back of the net. Only for VAR to disallow the goal.
Moyes’ men got a clear chance to level when Benrahma breaks into the area, squares for Soucek and McKenna makes a block which VAR adjudges to have hit the defender’s arm. Forest’s goalkeeper, went the right way and saved the penalty to maintain the lead.
Awoniyi who was a year and nine months old the last time Nottingham Forest scored a Premier League goal, received a standing ovation from the fans has he made way for Sam Surridge in the 72nd minutes.