‘Obvious’ - Nottingham Forest boss delivers honest verdict on key Newcastle United decision

Nottingham Forest boss Nuno Espirito Santo believes his side should have been awarded a penalty during their defeat to Newcastle United.
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Nuno Espirito Santo believes his side were denied an ‘obvious’ penalty by Anthony Taylor before they fell to a Bruno Guimaraes winner at the City Ground. Forest twice pegged back their visitors in the first-half before Guimaraes’ strike in the 66th minute secured all three points for the Magpies.

Before Guimaraes curled home the winner, however, Forest believed they should have been awarded a penalty when Taiwo Awoniyi fell over challenges from both Sven Botman and Martin Dubravka. The referee waved away Forest pleas before VAR agreed with the initial decision not to award a spot-kick.

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That moment came at a crucial time in the game with the hosts on level terms with Newcastle United and in the ascendency as they pushed for a winner. Speaking post-match, Espirito Santo was aggrieved that Taylor did not point to the spot nor did the technology overturn the decision: “We should have had a penalty.” He said. “I saw the replay over and over again. When you have the chance to see it on VAR, it's so obvious and that's why I don't understand [the decision]. I think [it's the defining moment] because we came from behind twice and that was a chance to take the lead. That was a decisive moment for sure.”

Defeat to Newcastle leaves Forest just two points and two places above the relegation zone. A potential points deduction for breaching Premier League financial rules is looming over the club and could see them slide into the relegation zone.