Henry back to Reading – another Forest blunder!

Okay, so none of us expected James Henry to waltz into the first team and set League One on fire, propelling us to automatic promotion single-handedly whilst simultaneously rescuing kittens from trees.  Well, most of us didn’t.  It’s a bitter pill though that the only recognised right winger in our squad (even if on loan) has been shunted back to his parent club a week early, having only had a few minutes as a substitute for the first team.

This compounds the bigger error that Smoulds made, in my opinion – and I really think it could be the error that has cost us automatic promotion (of course, automatic promotion is still a possibility, but it should be a mere formality now).  Our lack of a right winger sees us lumping Perchy there, a defender converted to a midfielder, Prutton – a central midfielder, Commons – our ONLY left winger (!) or, more often than not, nobody at all as everyone drifts central.

This means the focus of our creativity always falls upon the left side, where the less-than-consistent Commons plies his trade (when he’s actually played there), which means the opponents have the easy task of either (a) Commons not making as much effort as he ought to, or (b) when he is playing well, stick two men on him – which has the added bonus of overloading our unsupported left back, be it Bennett or Wright, when they’re attacking.

So we are one-dimensional, and that dimension is inconsistent – it’s no wonder we are so easy to manage and frustrate for opponents.  Losing Nicky Southall without replacing him in January, I fear, will prove to be the straw that broke the back of our promotion bid.  It’s fair to say Nicky was looking tired and off form before he left, and as he did – whilst I was sad because I valued his contribution to us – I assumed (naively) that we wouldn’t possibly allow him to leave without replacing him.

By taking a risk on a youngster, this was always the likely outcome – if I was feeling particularly cynical I would suggest the whole loan was purely to quell supporter unrest and was never intended to actually provide a real first team player.  I’m not so sure that was the case, but it was poor management by Smoulds, very poor.  Southall was contracted ’til the end of the season, we should have kept him if no replacement was forthcoming, and then he could have moved to the Gills in the summer.

Ho hum.  It’s all misery at Forest lately, isn’t it?


19 Responses

  1. It’s just like the England team, really. We’ve got too much creative talent, all wanting to burst forward on powerful runs ending with a blistering drive into the top corner, or the killer pass to our forwards. In the same way as England must drop either Lampard or Gerard, Smoulds has had to drop Henry because there’s just too much creativity in the middle of the park.

    Eh, what? OK then, just a half this time, though…

  2. don’t forget that jack used to regularly play on the right for Grimsby …

  3. This player was far too attacking and creative. Any player in Claderwoods team has to be able to play at centre half and this lad obviously couldn’t cut it in that position.

  4. We clearly have no natural wide right option. OK so sometimes loan moves don’t work out but this situation should not have happened in the first place. Southall should not have been allowed to leave without us having a suitable replacement.

    A huge concern now is that we go into the last few games with only 2 fit senior strikers. If Grant or Jack get injured early on Saturday, what will CC do? Even if Dobie is fit, he is clearly not the player he once was. Meanwhile, we have a young striker out on loan who IS scoring goals, is a product of out youth system and probably desperate for one last chance to show he is good enough to play for Forest.

  5. Shhh, our play off rivals might hear. There is a seasons worth of witnessing out weaknesses packaged up in 4 odd paragraphs there for enemy managers to read 🙂

  6. You’ve lost that loving feeling or is it planning, vision or just a lack of ambition…….we talk about buying players who are young enough to build a Championship team….well we have to get there first and few older heads on shorter (1 or 2 Year deals ) would have made the world of difference to our top 2 finish….sorry Colin but I think you have screwed up….of should that be Mark and his 5 year plan……its now year 5 and I’m looking forward to Premiership Football next year…….doh..

  7. after me saying in another posting that the reserves are doing well playing good football we go and get stuffed!!!

    this may fit in with Charlie Mc’s comment that CC is too defensive and negative and wants away.
    the rot is setting in and perhaps they are settling for a playoff place- just

    oh well a day out at the cash machine -sorry Wembley is the best we can hope for i think

    happy days

  8. colin, give teddy sheringham a ring…you never know………………….
    tnen recall bastians and weir-daley, and while you’re at it ring gillingham and see if they can spare southall til the end of the season.
    Attack, attack, attack!

  9. I hate man u, but fergie said unless they attacked roma and scored their dream was over. Learn from the horrible scot twat colin…

  10. We’re rubbish and I have officially lost faith. We’ll be lucky to make the play-offs.

  11. “I hate man u, but fergie said unless they attacked roma and scored their dream was over. Learn from the horrible scot twat colin…”

    Smoulders is from S**tland n’ all.

  12. Guess who scored for Reading reserves last night?!!! It wouldn’t surprise me if he gets a first team chance and we have to watch him scoring in the Premiership on Match of the Day!

  13. I’m not racist gareth, its a personal thing with ferguson. He IS a horrible scot twat. Whereas Smoulders is just a scot twat.

  14. I think Calderwood has settled for the playoffs problem is after Monday we need to look over our shoulders, we are in danger of missing out all together !

  15. “I’m not racist gareth, its a personal thing with ferguson. He IS a horrible scot twat. Whereas Smoulders is just a scot twat.”

    Lol, its alright mate, I didn’t have that in mind. You won’t be going to Room 101 any time soon.

  16. At the start of the season (I know it was a long time ago, but I’ve got a recollection that we may have been top of the league…) didn’t we only have two fit strikers? And weren’t their names Holt & Lester?

    Why the mad panic? Holt and Lester HAVE been our most consistent strikers this season. Now at long last Calderwood will not be able to tinker around and rotate our strikers. Maybe they will finally get sharpness in front of goal (which you only get by consistently playing games).

    Tyson’s contribution this season has been negligable – whether this is due to injuries only is open to debate as I feel he has been affected by the transfer speculation in the January window.

    Calderwood is too cautious, his football is too boring and lacks ambition. It is the lack of ambition that will cost us this season and in the end, we probably will miss out on promotion.

    You can see us in the play offs, playing for a nil nil in the first leg, desperately holding on for a draw in the second leg and going out on penalties!

    We do have a squad with real attacking options. CC needs to release the shackles and let them play. Kris Commons is central to this, but he needs to be given the support.

    The lack of movement from the front two when we had the ball on Saturday was embarrassing. However when we didn’t have the ball, they were chasing lost causes, hounding the defenders etc etc. Therefore they were knackered. With a midfield including the likes of Gary Holt (who we missed on Saturday), David Prutton & James Perch, surely we have enough defensive minded players to allow the attackers to attack. Wouldn’t it be nice to see Grant Holt in the centre and able to attack a cross, rather than ‘marauding’ down the left wing and being the one who crosses into the box (normally to no one).

    We have the players, do we have the manager? Only time will tell.

  17. It’s the curse of the No 15 jersey I guess… Remember Tony Vaughan, John Thompson, Andy Impey, Eugen Bopp, Neil Harris… 🙂

  18. Barrow, you’re right.

    Of our other strikers, apart from Lester and Holt, those out on loan haven’t figured, Harris may as well not have been here, ditto Dobie, Tyson – well, we managed without him before.

    Maybe Jason Lee could be tempted over for nezxt season – he’s still on for a goal every third game (on average) for his whole career, which includes the top flight of course.

    I’m guessing of course but it’s an average that is more than ANY of our strikers have, or ever will, achieve.

    PS Aylebury… what kind of player WAS Dobbin?

  19. Colin said he would bide his time to bring in a loanee so they could play in the playoff final should our season end up in that desperate position. At the time i was dissapointed the club were even thinking of the play offs but could see the reasons behind delaying in bringing in a creative player to spark us into life.. Colin was right to delay and showed good hindsight in his comments but in substance delivered nothing leaving our playoff hopes on mini me keeping things tight at the back whilst steaming up the wing to whip in a low cross that he miracuously manages to nod in at the front post. Its a long shot but fingers crossed. We are Forest fans after all, it was never gonna be easy!!!

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