Forest vs. Brentford preview…

A bit of deja vu courtesy of our cup tie on tuesday – we once again play host to Brentford at the weekend in the more-important league fixture.  Forest come into this tie on the back of five straight wins, and our last game was the 2-1 defeat of Brentford in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.  Brentford, however, won’t be looking forward to revisiting the City Ground – this time with a few more people in it – they’ve not won in 11 games and a in rather a freefall in the league.  Forest of course top the table, Brentford are currently 19th.

In the cup match Smoulderwood made five changes to his usual lineup – it’s expected he’ll restore Paul Smith, Ian Breckin, Danny Cullip, Kris commons and Neil Harris to the starting lineup for the league fixture.  Junior Agogo will no doubt be looking forward to testing some of the weaknesses in the Brentford defence he discovered midweek.  Brentford boss Rosenior didn’t make as many changes for the cup fixture, so if that’s anything like a first-choice team for him, they’re going to be worried!

Jo Kuffour did stand out for the Bees on tuesday – a pacey tricky little striker, with a limited sense of direction, he reminded me of a stunted version of a young Marlon Harewood.  That said, he did nutmeg Fernandez and all-but score on tuesday, but hopefully he’ll get less generosity from our more experienced defenders.  But he’s certainly worth keeping an eye on.

Certainly the form book would suggest a home win is almost inevitable, but sequences of straight wins are just as inevitably going to be broken sooner or later, much as runs without a win are – a very different Brentford team might show up to a ground with a more respectable attendance making a bit of noise, but certainly if Forest can avoid complacency and go about their business to the best of their ability, then we really shouldn’t have any problem overcoming Brentford for the second time in a week.

Felix off to the Vics

Youngster Felix Bastians has gone on loan to Northwich Victoria (who play in the Conference) for a month in order to gain some first team experience.  Despite making 13 appearances last season for us, he’s not broken into Colin Calderwood’s Forest side this season, despite spending a fair chunk of it without Kris Commons (admittedly Felix himself was nursing an injury throughout much of this period).

He was watched by the Northwich boss in a recent friendly, which prompted the move for his services – he may well get his first taste of competitive action in a while on saturday – when Northwich will face Halifax.  Certainly Felix showed promise in his appearances with us, but he certainly could use some experience and a stint of Conference football might be just the thing to toughen the young German up a bit – so a good move, in my opinion!