Awoniyi has scored most of his goals at City Ground, and he continued that magnificent run
Nottingham Forest continued their fight to stay alive in the Premier League when they welcomed Southampton to City Ground on Monday.
The Tricky Trees suffered a painful 2-1 loss to Brentford in their last outing, and they were looking to get back to winning ways against a Southampton side that had lost four of their last five games.
Nigeria striker Awoniyi led the line for Nottingham Forest, while Saints’ coach Ruben Selles left Paul Onuachu on the bench.
Southampton dominated the early proceedings, but Nottingham Forest struck the first blow, and it was none other than Awoniyi. The big Nigerian striker linked up well with Brennan Johnson, who sent him a cut back in front of goal, and Awoniyi made no mistake sending the ball into the net from point-blank range
However, the former Union Berlin man showed his great strikers’ instinct to pounce on a ball in the danger zone and beat the goalkeeper with a low drive to make it two for the Tricky Trees after 21 minutes.
Then Carlos Alcaraz pulled one back from the Saints in the 25th minute to put some respect on the scoreline.
Awoniyi could have gotten his first career hat-trick in the 27th minute, but his shot went off.
Nonetheless, Nottingham Forest added one more just before halftime through Morgan Gibbs-White from the penalty spot.
The Tricky Trees failed to keep it tight at the back and Southampton capitalized on their lapses. Lyanco scored in the 51st minute to make it 3-2.
But Danilo took the sting off the game in the 71st minute with a strong finish to make it 4-2.
Onuachu was introduced into the game in the 76th minute for Southampton, but he was unable to offer much in attack.
At the other end, Awoniyi was taken off in the 81st minute for Sam Surrridge. However, it was already game set and match.
James Ward-Prowse scored a penalty deep in stoppage time. But it was just a consolation, as it ended 4-3 for the Tricky Trees.
For Awoniyi, it was his first brace since his last game for Union Berlin. With the win, Nottingham Forest have climbed to 16th on the table with 33 points, while Southampton sit rooted to the bottom of the Premier League with 24 points after 35 games.