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Nottingham Forest manager Billy Davies sidesteps promotion talk

12 February 2014

Nottingham Forest manager Billy Davies refused to be drawn on his side's automatic promotion chances after Jamie Paterson's superb double in a 3-0 win at Huddersfield Town extended their unbeaten league run to 13 matches.

Former Walsall winger Paterson stole in front of the Huddersfield defence to head his side into a 63rd-minute lead and then produced a moment of magic for a game-clinching second - his seventh goal in nine appearances.

The 22-year-old's classy 82nd-minute finish had Barclays Premier League class written all over it, while substitute Darius Henderson added a late third for Davies' promotion chasers, who stayed five points behind second-placed Burnley.

When asked if he was targeting a top-two finish in the Sky Bet Championship, Davies, who twice led Forest to the play-offs in his previous spell as boss at the club, said: "I'm thinking about the next game and winning the next game.

"I'm thinking about trying to get my injured players back as quickly as possible - that's my key priority."

Davies, currently without Henri Lansbury, David Vaughan, Chris Cohen, Dexter Blackstock, Eric Lichaj and Dexter Blackstock, said it would get more difficult for his side to maintain their unbeaten run without them.

"We're obviously frustrated about the quality we're missing," he said.

"I'd certainly be more confident if we had that quality still in the squad and available, but unfortunately we've not.

"It's not an excuse, it's a fact. But we'll continue to do what we can. We lost Guy Moussi here to a calf injury, which is another blow, but that's what happens."

Davies was full of praise for two-goal Paterson and added: "He got some great goals.

"That's what he's got, he's got that ability.

"He's still got bits to learn in his game, he's got to add bits to his game and that's what we'll work on.

"But there's no doubt he's got ability and no doubt he's a handful."

Defeat for Huddersfield was their first in the league at home since mid-December and dealt their own play-off hopes a big blow.

Ten points adrift of the top six at the start of play, Huddersfield have now lost four of their last five league games and boss Mark Robins does not want their season to drift away.

"It looked like a nil-nil for most of the game," Robins said.

"We shot ourselves in the foot. We certainly didn't play well throughout the game and it was disappointing from that aspect.

"You could tell Forest were going for promotion and we're in mid-table.

"I think one or two (of my players) need to get out of comfort zones, get their boots back on and start playing because that wasn't what we do.

"Forest were excellent, I've got to say that. They closed down well and worked harder than us."

Huddersfield's leading scorer James Vaughan limped out of the action in the 37th minute with a calf problem and Robins could not hide his frustration given the 12-goal striker only returned from a knee injury at the weekend.

"It looks like he's going to spend a bit of time out, but I don't know how long yet," Robins said.

"He seems to have these periods. He comes back from one and picks up another one, but we'll get him right I'm sure."

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