Preston North End were beaten 3-0 by Nottingham Forest, with goals from Lewis Grabban either side of Jack Colback’s volley giving the home side all three points.
Grabban’s first came from the penalty spot just after the half-hour mark, after Ben Whiteman was penalised for a foul inside the area, and Colback doubled their lead before the break.
Forest captain Grabban then made it three 70 minutes in, scoring off the inside of Daniel Iversen’s right-hand post.
Frankie McAvoy made two changes from the midweek victory over AFC Bournemouth, with Brad Potts and Daniel Johnson coming into the starting XI, in place of Sean Maguire and Alan Browne – the latter missing out through a knock.
The first chance of the game fell to Potts, with Tom Barkhuizen slotting the ball through to North End’s No.44, who took a touch and quickly fired goalwards, only to be denied by a strong right hand from Brice Samba.
PNE were forced in to a change just 20 minutes in, as Patrick Bauer limped off with an injury after bringing down Philip Zinckernagel, having to be replaced by fellow defender Jordan Storey.
From the free-kick which followed, Zinckernagel was on set piece duties and found the head of Ryan Yates for the hosts, but his attempt landed just wide of goal.
Forest then had an even better chance to open the scoring, which they duly took, after referee Simon Hooper adjudged Ben Whiteman to have clipped the heels of Brennan Johnson as he looked to clear. Skipper Grabban stepped up to take it and slotted straight down the middle.
The hosts could have doubled their lead a few moments later, with Yates taking the ball down on his chest and poking goalwards from inside of ten yards, but his effort went wide of goal.
Their second did come before the break, though, as a free-kick headed on to the edge of the box fell to Colback, who sent a low volley into the back of Daniel Iversen’s net.
North End had a superb opportunity to pull one back after a mazy run from Emil Riis down the right and a perfect cutback to find Potts ten yards out, but his effort went over the crossbar.
PNE came out with the same personnel for the second half, but made a double change on 56 minutes with Greg Cunningham and Scott Sinclair on for Josh Earl and Brad Potts – which saw a change of shape.
North End were on top for the play which followed, but Forest extended their lead to three 15 minutes later, with Hughes’ clearance hitting the back of van den Berg, and the ball fell kindly for Grabban to get his second of the afternoon.
Iversen was called into action by Spence's long-range effort just a couple of minutes from the end, but the game ended at 3-0.
Nottingham Forest line-up: Samba; Spence, Worrall, McKenna, Lowe; Yates, Colback, Zinckernagel (Lolley, 68); Johnson, Grabban (Taylor, 70), Mighten (Lolley, 63). Subs not used: Horvath, Figueiredo, Bong, Ojeda.
PNE line-up: Iversen; van den Berg, Bauer (Storey, 20), Hughes; Barkhuizen, Whiteman, McCann, Potts (Sinclair, 56), Earl (Cunningham, 56); Johnson, Riis. Subs not used: Hudson, Ledson, Huntington, Maguire.
Referee: Mr S Hooper
Attendance: 27,129 (1,917 away fans)