Lyle Taylor’s penalty six minutes into added time helped Nottingham Forest claim a 2-1 victory over Coventry and hand Chris Hughton his first home win as manager.
Forest looked to be on course for their fourth 1-1 draw of Hughton’s six-match tenure, after Callum O’Hare’s 57th-minute header had cancelled out a first-half goal from Scott McKenna at the City Ground.
But then Kyle McFadzean clipped Taylor’s heels in injury time to give the striker the chance to hand the Reds three points from the penalty spot – an opportunity he took with great calmness.
Forest almost took the lead in the 12th minute, when Marko Marosi made hard work of what should have been a straight-forward save from a driven shot from Anthony Knockaert, with the keeper relieved to see it bounce wide.
From the resulting corner, McKenna planted a header narrowly the wrong side of the post.
Gustavo Hamer conjured Coventry’s first attempt on goal in the 27th minute, but his 22-yard effort was always rising well over the bar.
Joe Lolley came close with a header that was deflected wide at the other end.
Forest went ahead in the 30th minute following some penalty box pinball that saw both Luke Freeman and Samba Sow have shots blocked, with the latter’s effort deflected perfectly into the path of McKenna, for him to sweep a low shot into the back of the net.
It was the defender’s first goal in more than a year, since he netted in a 3-0 win over Kilmarnock for Aberdeen, but his finish was impressive.
Forest keeper Brice Samba had to make an adept save to keep out O’Hare’s skimming shot, but Forest were deserving of their half-time lead.
Maxime Biamou was unlucky not to draw Coventry level early in the second half, when he saw his driven shot bounce back off the foot of the post.
An injury to Matt Godden gave Tyler Walker the chance to impress against the club where he came through the academy ranks.
But it was O’Hare who was on hand to head Coventry level in the 57th minute as he attacked a cross from Sam McCallum to flick home.
Forest almost restored their lead but saw Marosi hold a Taylor header confidently.
O’Hare also flashed another decent effort wide and Biamou should have put the visitors in front, but planted a great headed chance straight at Samba.
Samba pulled off an outstanding save to deny O’Hare as Coventry pushed hard for a second goal.
The Forest keeper also had to beat Walker in a race to a through ball to deny him a chance.
Substitute Sammy Ameobi picked out Lolley with a cross, but he could not get enough on his header.
Coventry had looked the more likely to snatch the win – right up until the moment Taylor netted from the penalty spot with the final kick of the game.