And it’s the Mackems again!

Our next Carling Cup opponents... 


Our next Carling Cup opponents...

Hot on the heels of playing them preseason at the City Ground, we are once again set to welcome the Mackems to the City Ground for a Carling Cup 2nd round tie.  Which should certainly be interesting!

Guy Moussi and Julian Bennett will have the opportunity to renew the starting-to-flourish acquaintance with Diouf (which seemed to involve them clattering him), and perhaps Roy Keane’s unconventional withdrawal of a player for no reason other than to test his side’s capability to cope with ten men (which they did) should they ever pick up a late dismissal will end up being tested in more realistic circumstances.

Either way it’s a good draw, I think.  Given the number of fans who made the trip down from the North East for a friendly, I imagine the away following will be good – and hopefully it will be a draw for the home fans too (he says, having resolutely sat at home listening to the radio this evening!!).

Forest stroll to comfortable win against Morecambe..

Hopefully plenty of pictures of Earnie in a Forest shirt like this will be forthcoming this season!

Hopefully plenty of pictures of Earnie in a Forest shirt like this will be forthcoming this season!

Nottingham Forest – 4
Morecambe – 0

Strikers or no strikers, goals proved to be not exactly hard to come by against Morecambe this evening at the City Ground.  As the Daily Mail quite rightly prophecised last night, Lee Martin from Manchester United was indeed signed on loan, and was drafted immediately into the team for this evening.  Rather excitingly, at NFFCBlog towers (as I was otherwise engaged so not in attendance), a text message post-match was received which said “Lee Martin, what a player!  He was everywhere. Pulled up near the end hopefully not serious.”

That sounds promising, now doesn’t it?

The early pressure all came from Forest, a Davies cross evading Earnshaw and Martin fractionally; the provider almost turned predator shortly after this, when he met a Luke Chambers cross but was unlucky enough to hit the post rather than scoring.  A freekick was struck into the wall by Earnie, the rebound was hit by the Moussinator but deflected for a corner.

Forest opened their account from a freekick, one which new boy Martin was rather harshly booked for taking too quickly.  Once the booking was resolved, Cohen stepped up and duly despatched the ball expertly into the bottom corner of the net.  One nil!  Davies was withdrawn due to the predictable injury (argh! another attack minded player is injured!).  He was replaced with Garath McCleary.

Earnie should’ve made it two after great work from Martin, but his shot from 14 yards was wide of the goal.  With around ten minutes until half time, Paul Smith was finally called into action – to, well, basically stand where he was – since that’s where the shot that Morecambe mustered was headed!  Martin was starting to grab people’s attention with an energetic and penetrative performance, although a shot he created was deflected.  Earnshaw had a few close calls due to an offside flag, including him actually putting the ball in the net as the first half came to a close.

The lead was doubled upon the hour, Joe Heath playing a through ball to Earnshaw who was able to flick the ball past Barry Roche before executing his trademark celebration infront of the intrepid fans who attended.  Newbold came on as a substitute, put one chance wide and then duly scored after calmly controlling Cohen’s cross and slotting the ball home from the middle of the penalty area.

The finale came from Earnshaw, picking up a pass and making a direct run down the middle – ending up in a one-on-one situation with ‘Captain Chaos’ Barry Roche.  The Welsh International made no mistake, stroking the ball past the ‘keeper and into the corner of the goal, sealing a scoreline that reflected the relative ease at which Forest were able to play their way through this fixture.  Lee Martin was limping towards the end, here’s hoping it’s nothing more than a touch of cramp and he’s available for the Swansea game.

Addendum; I’ve found a picture of Earnie celebrating this very evening!  Click here.