Do the football league know who our players are?

A few times Forest players have made the League One team of the week, which The Football League announce to recognise those who’ve made notable contributions to their sides fortunes in a particular week.  And you would expect that, given that we top the table so clearly have in our ranks a number of players who would be the envy of our peers in League One, in fact, if anything I would expect our players to feature more often than they do!

This time it’s Nicky Southall who’s made it – now, don’t get me wrong, I like Nicky Southall – but if this award is based on the Millwall game then why would it be Trigger that was picked out?  He was marked out of the game in the first half, and whilst didn’t play badly in the second half by any stretch, wasn’t the standout player for me.

In the past Julian Bennett raised eyebrows by being included in this award earlier in the season – it seems as though they get stuck on a particular position in the team and think “Oh, Forest got another good result, let’s stick their right winger in there”, rather than actually creating a ‘team of the week’ based on the actual players who made outstanding contributions.  Either that or they are operating on a serious time delay and Nicky Southall’s goal glut from few weeks back netted him this award.

So well done Nicky, but I’m increasingly failing to see the point of this award as it seems a little too random for my liking – if I had to pick a Forest player for inclusion then Wes Morgan was exceptional on saturday, as was Sammy Clingan and Junior Agogo – but Trigger was steady but unspectacular, particularly given his recent goalscoring exploits!

Brian Clough statue fund update..

The statue fund is edging ever closer to the target with a £1,400 boost from the latest eBay auction - thanks to buyers as far flung as Australia and the United States.  This takes the fund to almost £54,000, ever closer to the target of raising £60,000 to create a lasting monument to the great man in Nottingham’s city centre. 

The largest lot was £510 – for one of the gigantic banners that adorned the Council House during Brian Clough’s civic tribute in Nottingham, with other notable unique items such as an ‘Old Big ‘Ead’ sweater signed by Nigel Clough, Martin O’Neill and John Robertson, a football designed by fashionista Paul Smith, and a football signed by none other than Brazilian legend Pele.

A Forest shirt signed by the current squad will be winging its merry way down under – bought by an Australian bidder for £171, and perhaps bizarrely a programme signed by Kris Commons will be jet-setting it over the Atlantic to a new American home; who would’ve thought Kris would have such global appeal?

Rich Fisher from the statue fund said he was delighted with how much had been raised. “It’s another big step towards our target,” he said. “The auction had some rare items and bidding for the banner was hotting-up right until the deadline. We’re planning to have another internet auction soon to help us get nearer the £60,000 and we’re hoping that the ‘Clough Aid’ event will raise more money too.”

Tickets are still on sale for ‘Clough Aid’, a music event in aid of the statue fund. Several bands are playing a gig at the Rescue Rooms on Friday 15th December. The event is being organised by Nottingham-based band The Fakers. Other bands so far confirmed are Mint Ive and Delta Red. They’ve all been challenged to perfom a song made famous by Frank Sinatra – one of Cloughie’s favourite singers.

Tickets for Clough Aid, priced at £5, are available to buy from two different places in Nottingham city centre – the Rock City box office on Talbot Street, and Selectadisc Records on Market Street. Alternatively, they can be booked online with a debit or credit card, by visiting www.ltlf.co.uk/clough

The Fakers have set up a special webpage to help promote Clough Aid, where fans can listen to music recorded by the bands set to appear at the gig. This can be viewed at www.myspace.com/briancloughaid

Plans are afoot to add further bands and special guests to the line-up in the coming weeks – while the night will also feature DJs until 3am after the live music finishes.

The statue fund was set-up in June last year by a group of fans who are determined to see a lasting tribute to Brian Clough in Nottingham city centre. As well having the backing of Brian Clough’s family, the fund has the support of the city council, Nottingham Forest and the supporters club.

For the latest information on the statue fund and how to donate on-line, visit the non-profit making tribute website www.brianclough.com

People are still being encouraged to send donations. Cheques should be made payable to: ‘Nottingham City Council – Brian Clough Statue Fund’ and sent C/O Paul J. Ellis, PKF, Accountants & Business Advisers, Regent House, Clinton Avenue, Nottingham, NG5 1AZ.

Mad dash in Wiltshire for FA Cup tickets..

The magic of the FA Cup compelled crazy Salisbury fans to  queue up for tickets for their forthcoming game against Forest at 5am yesterday – over the course of the day they sold just under 1,200 tickets.  The reason I consider them crazy for this early morning activity is because they still have more tickets to sell – starting this morning at 9:30am for supporters with vouchers from Salisbury City’s last game against Enfield.

If there are any tickets remaining after tomorrow, then they go on general sale to non-Enfield voucher holders; with the proviso that they can provide identification to prove they are infact a citizen of Salisbury.  I imagine they will have sold out pretty much before then anyway, such is the lure of the Smoulderwood bandwagon rolling into town!  Arf.  I shouldn’t joke really, it’s a big deal for a team like Salisbury, and an opportunity for Forest to make a real arse of themselves on national telly.

But the best news of the day from Wiltshire is… wait for it… they have manufactured commemorative “City-Forest souvenir scarves” as well as the obligatory t-shirts – it’s not on a par with the Weymouth-Forest souvenir sausages; but I suppose it will just have to do – it tickles me anyway, I’m probably just bitter that I couldn’t get a ticket!

Click here for an update from the Wiltshire press

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