Albert Adomah’s first goal for Nottingham Forest was enough to earn a 1-0 pre-season friendly win over Crystal Palace at a damp City Ground.
The summer signing from Aston Villa struck 12 minutes before half-time to ensure Forest head coach Sabri Lamouchi tasted victory in his first Trentside outing.
Lamouchi gave City Ground debuts to Aro Muric, Alfa Semedo, Tiago Silva and Adomah and The Reds produced an accomplished and professional performance to overcome their Premier League opponents.
Both sides were keeping the ball moving well on a slick City Ground surface and it was Forest who created a decent half-chance on 15 minutes. Jack Robinson’s deep ball to the back post found Matty Cash on the run but he couldn’t keep his header down and it sailed harmlessly over the bar.
The Reds were looking confident on the ball, emphasised as Ben Watson sprayed a superb long pass out to Adomah on the left wing. The former Villa man’s cross was only cleared out as far as Joe Lolley but his powerful header cleared Wayne Hennessey’s crossbar once again.
Palace had made plenty of defensive headers at one end but threatened for the first time shortly before the half-hour mark. Forest struggled to clear a ball forward to Christian Benteke and as it bobbled around inside the penalty area, Max Meyer stabbed a shot inches wide of the target.
The game had been drifting until the 33rd minute when Forest took the lead. Lolley’s ball over the top found Lewis Grabban inside the penalty area and although the former Palace striker was denied by Hennessey, the ball fell kindly to Adomah who drilled a low effort into the back of the net.
There were no changes for either side at the break but it was Palace who created the first opportunity of the second half. A wicked left-wing cross from Andros Townsend found Benteke inside the box but he guided his header straight at Muric in the Forest goal.
Forest came millimetres away from doubling their lead on 62 minutes. Tiago Silva was brought down 25 yards from the Palace goal and having decided to step up and take the free-kick himself, the Portuguese curled his effort against the post with Hennessey beaten all ends up.
Despite almost extending their advantage at one end, Forest had to be alert at the other to prevent Palace from finding a leveller. Muric was forced to push away a curling effort from Benteke before, moments later, Scott Dann had an effort blocked on the line and Luka Milivojevic sent a rasping shot over the bar.
The visitors started to assert some authority on the contest and almost found their equaliser on 67 minutes. James McArthur produced a couple of calm touches inside the penalty area but his low, curling strike kissed the outside of Muric’s right-hand post and went behind for a goal-kick.
Palace continued to push men forwards at every opportunity and Jeffrey Schlupp had a golden chance to equalise with ten minutes to play. Townsend turned the ball round the corner to the former Leicester man inside the penalty area but he blazed his shot high and wide of the target.
The open nature of the game was providing both sides with chances to score and Forest were the next to miss an opportunity. Lolley’s dangerous cross into the box was missed by Hennessey but Michael Dawson could only prod the ball wide at the back post with the goalkeeper on the floor.
That miss was not to prove costly in the end as Forest comfortably saw out the remainder of the second half to make sure the majority of the near 15,000 crowd were sent home happy.