Bring on the Derby!

Along with our movement from the League One to Championship sections of the assorted websites, the announcement of the fixtures is another one of those crucial moments that makes a promotion (or indeed, a relegation) crystalise into reality that little bit more for a football fan.  So having a chance to peruse yet another season starting at home, it does make it exciting.  And daunting.

Whilst we know very well that Forest have been capable of excelling in the games that looked a bit tricky whilst spectacularly failing at games which look ‘easy’ on paper – the step change in calibre of opposition is only too clear, and given the lack of signings it does have the potential to make the sphincter twitch a tad, but equally, for the first time in ages I’m relishing the season starting.

Reading, Swansea, Watford, Wolves, Burnley, Preston, Charlton and Plymouth aren’t teams that – had you presented the list to me fifteen years ago – inspire trepidation, but as we are developing and earning our right to move up the leagues they suddenly take on a more daunting aspect.  These are the teams we meet before September is out.  It does rather bring home the challenge Smoulds faces.

Of course, my eyes were primarily drawn to early November and late February; that’s when we can reacquaint ourselves with our old enemies!  We start with a trip to Prideless Park, with a wait ’til 2009 before we can welcome them to our domain.  I’d hoped we would get them quite early, given the mass rebuilding scheme Paul ‘sex pest’ Jewell has commenced, it would be good to play them early to take advantage of an ungelled team.

As it is, we have time to acclimatise to our new level before meeting the Sheep, which would work out well too.  It certainly gives Commons plenty of time to pick up a dubious injury, if nothing else!  The full fixture list is on the Forest site which you can access by clicking here.  It does make the mouth water rather, less than two months to go… I can’t wait, now go out and get some players, Smoulders!