Dean Smith admitted he was “devastated” for his players after their incredible 5-5 draw with Nottingham Forest on Wednesday night.

One of the all-time great Championship encounters took place at Villa Park, with both sides eventually settling for a share of the spoils.

It looked as though Villa were going to secure a famous 5-4 victory over their opponents, only for Lewis Grabban’s late effort to earn the visitors a point.

Speaking to the Express & Star after the game, Smith couldn’t contain his disappointment at not winning:

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I’m devastated for the players. To come back so many times and then at 5-4 you are thinking we are going to go on and win it.

On top of that, we have also missed some very good chances. Tammy has missed a couple of headers, we had two disallowed goals as well.

It’s total disappointment. I always felt in control of the game and I know that sounds weird. We’ve had 26 attempts on goal today, against their eight. Our goalkeeper has not made a save.

I’m devastated for the players and disappointed it is not another three points at Villa Park.

But the appreciation from the home fans at the end shows they can see what we are trying to do. We just need to tighten up a bit.

Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images Sport

The draw leaves Villa eighth in the Championship – two place and three points behind Forest.

Hopefully Grabban’s late strike won’t prove crucial come the end of the season, as Smith’s men seek promotion back to the Premier League.

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