Forest prop up the Championship…

Plymouth Argyle – 1
Nottingham Forest – 0

Plymouth without a home win so far this campaign, Forest without a win on their travels – that less high profile physics conundrum of what happens when two immovable objects collide finished with a conclusion that was inevitable to all good cynically minded Forest fans.  We lost.  Again.  To a silly goal.  Again.  We are now bottom of the league, albeit still after only eight games into the league campaign, but nonetheless, it doesn’t make any happier reading regardless of the distance into the season.

The first half wasn’t particularly inspiring from either side; for Forest it was characterised by infuriatingly wasteful possession in defence and midfield alike.  Aside from an early chance put over the bar for the home side, neither goalkeeper had a great deal to do – Paul Smith was the first called into action to deal with a shot that deflected off Fallon after Guy Moussi was the latest culprit in the great Nottingham Forest ‘give the ball to Plymouth’ extravaganza that was unfolding on the Home Park pitch.

After half an hour or so Argyle started to come more into the game, crafting half-chances for Gallagher whilst Forest pumped the ball aimlessly forward for the lively-but-surely-frustrated Nathan Tyson, who manfully attempted to do the best he could with the (total lack of) service he was receiving from his team mates.  As it looked like a half time stalemate was approaching, Wes had one of those ‘headless chicken’ moments we’ve so far been largely spared this season.

He had what looked like a relatively straight forward clearance to make having taken the ball from Gallagher, but it ended up bizarrely straight into Fallon’s path and headed goalward having richocheted off the cumbersome striker’s leg.  Another bizarre goal, another unlucky goal?  Perhaps, but ultimately, as with all the others, it was another preventable goal – and whilst I have been fairly quick to cite bad luck in previous games, I am rapidly coming to the conclusion that we create our own luck in this game.

Late and rare involvement from Andrew ‘Play me or I’ll leave’ Cole and Nathan Tyson almost created us a chance to bag an equaliser before half time, but a couple of solid defensive blocks put paid to that, and the Reds were forced in at the break a goal down with some kind of comeback required of them.  The omens weren’t good.

The second half saw a change in personnel; Smoulderwood continues his policy of a half time withdrawal of players who’ve been booked – this time Perchy was victim, being replaced by McCleary to hopefully give the Reds more attacking potency.  This half started more brightly for Forest, bringing the first save of the game from Larrieu was none other than Andrew Cole; latching on to a through ball from midfield, the veteran striker shot from a tight angle, forcing the keeper to save with his legs.

More chances were being created, and at times Tyson and Cole worked well together to cause Plymouth some problems; not least when McCleary burst forward and played a pass to Cole who unfortunately couldn’t find the target, his shot agonisingly wide of the far post.  Cohen struck from range bringing another save from Larrieu; before the momentum was lost with Lee Martin hitting the deck and requiring treatment.

The home side almost capitalised immediately, Mackie turning Bennett inside out before cutting inside and thundering a shot off the top of the crossbar.  It became apparent that Martin wasn’t going to continue in the game, and Arron Davies was introduced; by now the home side were well in the ascendancy, calls for a penalty were unheeded when Mackie appeared to be making a meal of a challenge Benno put in on him as the ball came over aerially.  

Smithy pulled out his characteristically cracking save when a Plymouth substitute looked to be certain to double the home side’s lead.  Forest did have a late flourish, but alas Luke Chambers could only conspire to spanner the ball over from close range after a cracking cross by Cohen, and Larrieu was equal to a decent freekick from Cohen; and finally Cole was denied by some stout defending by the home side.

Once again we were faced with some fairly shambolic refereeing, Wes picking up a second booking for – well – sod all as far as I can tell.  In the aftermath both Cole and Tyson appeared to also pick up bookings for dissent; which capped off a rather rubbish afternoon as is becoming characteristic of the Reds away from the City Ground (and indeed, at the City Ground in the last couple of games).  This run of results is starting to get quite concerning.

I’m not sure that calling for the managers head is the answer just yet; although I have done so in the past with Smoulds, admittedly.  With dodgy rumours of Allardyce waiting in the wings, sometimes the devil you know can be the better option – but we shall see, I certainly don’t expect the outcome of the Sheffield Wednesday game to be decisive for his future though, we’ve had seemingly more obvious moments in the past when a sacking was called for and it wasn’t forthcoming.  So let’s keep some perspective.

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17 Responses

  1. Calderwood needs to go, it really is looking bad. He has spent a lot of money and nothing is happening for him. They are either injured or not playing well. If he does not get a result at sheff wednesday he should bugger off. Crowds are down, he has ran out of idea’s and he is out of his depth in this league. Yes he got us up last year but I beleive any manger in league one would have done.
    Why not Nigel Clough ?????????????????????????????

  2. Of course there’s a clamour for Balsawood to go but it’s not induced by the abysmal Championship performance so far, it’s been there since about the middle of last season. In the euphoria of promotion we were prepared to give him another chance…. “yes, now we’ll start afresh, new players amd a renewed spirit”. But in reality he’s never, IMHO, demonstrated ability to get us operating consistently as a team and that includes the final games in Divsn 1. Whether that’s an inability to motivate, understand tactics or build confidence, I don’t pretend to know. But it’s a long, long time since I had true, unalloyed confidence in a Forest team ~ MY TEAM ~ to deliver. Matches are approached with uncertainty these days. When did we, as fans and seemingly also the team, last have real confidence that a match was won before the kick-off ?
    We’ve all lost confidence; in the team to win, in the manager to manage and in his boss to make the whole organisation work again.
    Of course, we’re not alone feeling like this, gloating over the predicament of Newcastle, Spurs and even those down the arse-end of the A52 just serves to illustrate that.

    “redash” above, summarises well – but please let’s get real and drop this “Nigel-Clough-must-be-good-for-us-because-his-father-was” stuff.

    On the plus side, I’ve been working in the Middle East for 4 weeks and thanks NFFC for providing the only decent source of Forest info !

  3. All I can say is I am bloody glad I didn’t get a season ticket. I can’t be arsed anymore. It’s got to a point where I am bored of Forest. Looking at the attendences other people are thinking the same.

    I know people who’s got season tickets and even they don’t go every game because they can’t be arsed.

    I don’t know what it is but something is missing down at Forest to entice us fans back, on Saturday I use to get the urge to go down the reds but for some reason I have lost that feeling.

    I thought after Yeovil last season I would have the buzz but I haven’t. Maybe like K Hope says above, I have no confidence in us winning a game before it’s start, lets be honest we were shit last season, if it wasn’t for being very lucky in the last few games and results going our way which really shouldn’t have we most probably should still be in League One with this manager.

    I just don’t think the players and manager from last season are good enough to cut it in the championship.

  4. Good comments from nffc and fellow reds above.We are all past the excuses mark now i have seen this pattern develop many times before ,poor refs ,sending offs ,unlucky decisions.The reality is simple since middle of last term forest fans with half a bit of football nouse have not been convinced with smoulderwood and the methods of certain players.

    Chambers
    morgan = not good enough simple as that

    bennett = big heart but suspect

    Andy cole = past it no drive

    We have got to be careful another 4 or 5 games without points is serious trouble all the signs are there for relegation we need a change.In the past the board have hesitated to get quality management in when crisis has arisen will they act this time ?

    Just think nffc and fellow reds ! roy keane was on our radar before smoulderwood came in but the spineless board that we have who by the way never even gave physco an interview twice OVERLOOKED BOTH KEANE AND PEARCEY I BLAME THEM FOR OUR CURRENT MESS FOOLS.

    we need a change fellow reds it aint gonna change or improve under this regime above comments are spot on SMOULDS UVE RAN UR COURSE.

  5. am i glad i went fishing with me wireless – and not gone all that way to see s**t in red shirts takeing the p**s out of working class,in the middle of a credit crunch,dejected after years of hurt and pain – Nottingham Forest Supporters. come in CC and one or two of YOUR squad – your time is up my friend !!!

  6. Its simple….we got up last year by luck…..remeber how we played, how awful we were and we still did it on the last day. We all forgot this in the promotion party…me included. But the fact remains it took 3 years to exit L1 and the way we are at present 1 year to exit CCC at the wrong end. I feel Calderwood is not the man, if we had not gone up on the last day Calderwood would have gone….it shows the boards intentions when he did not get an extended contract. Like most thingsin life…its timing….but wait too long and we will have a Megson type hill to climb.

    I hope that there is activity behind the scenes for a replacement because if its now of in December….I fear we need to do something.

    Redric…I agree, we talk about refs, luck and rub of the green…..good teams don’t have these problems….poor teams do.

  7. there’s no doubt that the season hasn’t started as we’d wanted but its way too early to be talking bout getting rid of calderwood. the pre-season talk of play-offs and promotion was always a dream rather than reality, if we’d been getting hammered every week then i would be questioning the manager but the truth is we haven’t and whilst there’s no point blaming lady luck ,its true to say a lot of the goals we’ve conceded have been fortunate to say the least.
    if forest did tkae the easy option and sacked CC then whilst nigel clough would a popular choice there must be reason why he’s not taken burton beyond a “decent conference side” level in the past few years and why he’s never ended up with one of the numerous league jobs he’s been linked with.

    Whilst i’m not happy with the results or our league position i wont start panicking for a good few games yet. but i would like to see CC being more proactive in the loan market and look to bring in a striker with more presence to help out tyson and earnshaw and a right back with a little more about him than chambers who has been exposed at this level more than once so far this season.

  8. It is not easy to be positive right now, I am certainly no admirer of Calderwood, yes we got lucky at the end of last year but the league table doesn’t lie.So last year we deserved to go up and this season -so far- we are bottom because we deserve to be. Freak and unlucky goals against us, bad refereeing and injuries are all excuses.
    Maybe when Garner Anderson Mcgugan and Davies (I realise he came on yesterday)are fully fit we will be better and start to win. But in addition to these guys we need to strengthen the defence urgently. I have said it before on this site-you cannot fault Wes for commitment but he makes too many costly errors-I would use him as a sub and not start with him. Chambers is a centre back full stop, so play him there or not at all.
    Regarding the strikers even if we had Drogba, Robinho and Christiano Ronaldo we would still struggle because the service to them is non existent.
    As I said I am no fan of Calderwood, he doesn’t seem to motivate the team and his formations and selections (especially last season) are baffling at times, there should be a better option- I really don’t think Nigel Clough is the answer-. Unless a radical improvement in performance and results in next 2 games-I think we should find the better option, before it is too late.
    By the way great blog NFFC

  9. it really isn’t looking good so far 1 win from 8 games really isn’t impressive. we still cannot seem to score when earnshaw’s out there’s no-one who can put the ball in the net. I thought after the fantastic win over Watford things were up and running but since then we have played very poorley albeit some very unfortunate goals and some awful refereeing. If we are still in this position in December i think they should consider bringing in a new manager. we really need to gather some winning consistency and really start to finish our chances. Although we still have many players injured thats not an excuse to not win games i think we really need to get something out of Tuesday’s clash with Sheffield Wednesday and seriously need to beat fellow strugglers next Saturday COME ON FOREST!!!

  10. We got up last year because of cheltenham.cc, like a couple of our players,is out of his depth in this league. Bring Sam in to work with him. If cc stays he needs help …Quickly !!!!

  11. I think it is too early to be calling for CC’s head. Although he isn’t very good tactically (and managed to fall out with the most talented Forest player of the past 3-4 years so badly he wanted to join D*rby) the bulk of his transfer signings have been astute. I do think, however, that if we are in the bottom three by Nov-Dec the board should get rid. Hopefully when we have young Lewis back, plus Anderson and Garner, we’ll be OK (just!). Cheers.

  12. This is relegation fodder being served up. I know it’s only early season but does anyone really believe that Calderwood has the tactical ability and motivation to turn things around?

    He won’t change from this daft formation, we have no width and a lack of creativity. Taking players off at half time to stop them from getting sent off? Talk about over-compensating. If things don’t improve fast, he’s got to go!

  13. Judging by everyones comments forest fans have had enough CC isnt the man to take us to next level.

    Whats your thoughts on a new man nffc and fellow reds.?

    O course all would like to see physco back ,i would be happy with alan curbishley good tacticaly exellent pedigree level headed with conviction to stand up for himself.

  14. Hold on everybody, we han’t played 10 games yet & we’re talking about getting rid of CC’s head. yes, CC’s not a great manager but he’s learning too just like the players.

    What worries me is that every match some player seems top be picking up an injury & also the last 2 games we’ve been picking up Red cards (2 yellows). Give the manager a few more games I say – (6 more the most) & let’s see what happens. It’s not as we’re being thumped, we’re losing on fine details which with experience should be ironed out.

    Cole had a decent 2nd half which was good to see. He linked well with Tyson (as reports have said) so we sit & wait to see if it continues & there’s no reason not to. Also, Alan – a good point made, maybe we need another experienced manager to help him out if the board doesn’t want to replace him.

  15. Sorry but its a results driven business, if you don’t get the results you have to go, only a short way in but another 6 games and you need playoff type form just to hit mid table, 10 more games and you need promotion form just to stay up. Past history has shown us we wait to long and the Xmas change leaves no time for the new guy (Who ever he may be).

    Act now and reap the benifits, delay and go down….its that simple

    I just cannot tollerate another relegation and L1 football, I just can’t….

  16. Set out a simple 4-4-2, pacey wingers, 2 hungry strikers and we’ll soon enough see the goals flooding in.

    It’s a massive step up in quality compared to League 1, give the guys chance to adapt and find ‘the’ formation that works well, both home and away.

    Remember we’ve had injury problems too, we haven’t had a core team playing week in, week out.

    I’d challenge any manager to cope with absentee’s with the quality of…

    – Earnshaw,
    – Cole,
    – Anderson (yet to kick a football in anger),
    – Garner,
    – McGugan,
    – Davies,
    – Tyson.

    .. at some point over the opening 8 games and see how they fair.

    Get behind the lads tomorrow night and show the team the passion we have for NFFC.

  17. Sick as a tree is spot on, lifelong forest fans see the writing on the wall NOW.Some comments astound me how can you wait til christmas the damage is already done.I have played in teams who have been both relegated and promoted.How can doncaster and swansea both come up and have half the budget and resources and are getting it together much better than us ? i will tell you

    In swansea`s case they have a much better manager it all starts at the top ,motivation and a good tactical head simple as that cc is on borrowed time !

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