Cardiff City latest winners in the City Ground points giveaway!

Nottingham Forest – 0
Cardiff City – 1

I tire of writing these reports; I wasn’t going to bother ’til tomorrow – but then I decided tomorrow was a new day, so I’d do it this evening after all.  A shake-up from Smoulds saw Perch in for Chambers at right back, Lynch replacing Bennett at left back, McGugan into midfield and Garner up front – with Tyson dropping to the bench and Cole dropped entirely, and Forest playing the murky bastard-child-of-433-and-451 formation that Smoulderwood had abandoned for a more traditional 442 in recent games.

And d’you know what?  For around thirty to forty minutes it looked like it might well work.  A first glimpse of Garner in a Forest shirt showed much promise; particularly given he must be incredibly short on match fitness and sharpness.  The visitors, with the numerous and vocal fans (more on them later), were restricted to very few opportunities, the best of which was spannered wide by the ungainly Bothroyd.  Again a shove in the area didn’t give us a penalty, as on Tuesday night, and again despite crafting chances – Forest were wasteful in taking them.  McGugan coming closest striking the post.

 The visitors surprised me in their defensive outlook; so half time came with some degree of cautious optimism in the stands – after all, we’ve seen good performances in the first half easily outdone by buffoonery in the second.  It’s true that when our defence had duties to perform the central two looked shaky to say the least, and Cardiff do have dangerous players capable of causing damage on the break – they were clearly just having an off day this afternoon.

Tyson was introduced at half time for Anderson; presumably down to tiredness issues for the loanee, and the second half started really positively – with Forest crafting real chances with a bit of guile and cunning pay.  Perch crossed one to the back stick which Tyson headed by to Garner who was only prevented from netting on his debut by a last ditch block from a Cardiff defender.  Seconds later clever play from McGugan set McCleary up for a chance which was just wide of the post.

Then came the calamity.  McGugan clumsily brought down McPhail in the area, the referee awarded the spotkick, McCormack converted by blasting it low and central – underneath the diving Camp.  A veritable McPenalty if you will, and one that somewhat knocked the stuffing out of the Reds and energised the visitors into their first real spell of dominance in the game as they started to get forward more and cause problems for ‘Calamity Wes’ and ‘Calamity Luke’ (who had been brought on just before the penalty for ‘Calamity Kelvin’).

McCleary was the best attacking hope for the Reds, and he brought another good save from Heaton from the edge of the area, before the diminutive figure of Robert Earnshaw was introduced into the fray for the clearly tired Garner – a solid debut from him though, although it was good to see Earnie back too.  He received a good ovation from Forest and Cardiff fans alike, which is always nice to see.

The travelling side had clearly decided they were content to sit on their lead – and given their creation of chances so far that wasn’t really surprising.  It felt like the equaliser must arrive when Earnshaw turned excellently to get through on goal, but his shot from an angle was excellently saved by Heaton – although I couldn’t help but half wish he’d squared it for the onrushing Tyson – however, I think most strikers in his position would’ve gone for goal.

Our best chance in the second half came from Tyson burst down the left flank, he put in an excellent cross for Cohen, but alas the impressive Miguel Comminges managed to get a touch on it to enable his keeper to gather.  After this it became a huffing and puffing exercise as Cardiff tried to run down the clock, with Forest unable to create any more meaningful chances meaning we still find ourselves rooted to the bottom of the table on six points.  Joy.

Now, I usually look forward to seeing a big away following – but I had some reservations based on past experiences with Bluebird fans.  Outside the ground though I got chatting to a group of lads from Cardiff, as I often do with away fans, and they were top blokes.  Perhaps I had been a little forward in thinking negative things.  During the game I spotted the same group of lads, foaming at the mouth chanting ‘scabs’ at a few bemused Forest fans.  Perhaps I was right after all, or perhaps some sort of weird transmogrification happens when they enter a football ground.

It brings out the worst in our fans too; I’m no fan of this rabid patriotism that encounters with Welsh teams brings out in people.  Nothing wrong with being proud of your country, not at all, but the pointless England/Welsh slagging off is completely dull.  As is the ‘scabs’ nonsense, as is our ‘sign on..’ nonsense in response.  The image of a pre-teen Welsh lad chanting ‘scabs’ at Forest fans sums it up really.  This lad wasn’t even born during the miner’s strikers.  I was only about 7 or 8.  Pretty pathetic.

It’s the unbridled hatred that confuses me though; we all like a bit of banter – but Cardiff do have a much higher per cent of properly angry fans.  I mean, if En-ger-land is so full of shit, why the hell would you bother coming?  Where does this rage come from?  I guess they probably get a similar reaction from every English club’s moron element as they do here, so perhaps are constantly on the defensive.  I don’t know – it’s fascinating observing them from an anthropological point of view, though!

As my companion at the game ruefully concluded as we exited the ground back to the bus stop, our season tickets had at least served the dual function of allowing us to see a football match but also take a look at the ‘idiot enclosure’ in the human zoo that the away end became this afternoon.

Also finally, I hear many whispers of some kind of rift between Paul Smith and Kelvin Wilson; which some folk have ascribed to the hasty acquisition of Lee Camp.  Today’s rumour (courtesy of a comment on an earlier post) is that Wilson struck Smith today.  Now, ‘Calamity Kelvin’ was poor again tonight, and frankly I’m losing patience with all our defenders at the moment, and if this is true it worries me – because this is the person who wears the armband, what kind of example does that set?  

I’m losing faith in a lot of things.  It sounds repetitive, and like a horrible cliche, but we were the better team today, and but for some slightly shonky refereeing (their penalty was a penalty, but where was ours?), good saves, bad luck (hitting the post) and poor taking of chances, we’ve once again managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.  How many times do you hear comments like that retrospectively about a team that has been relegated?  Quite often I fancy.

On the bright side, Garner looks good – when he gets to full fitness and sharpness the prospect of him excites me.  Earnie returning is a great boost too, although the amount of limping that was going on (McGugan, McCleary and Tyson at various points) worries me – do we not do something to prevent injuries that other teams do?  And our defence worries me – I don’t think most of our defenders are good enough for this level – if any of them as Wilson is properly going off the boil, and he was the best candidate for making the step up.

Palace away up next, which will be a tricky place to go – particularly with the inevitable Warnock-inspired trick-or-cheat fest that is bound to ensue; and then I don’t need to mention the odious place to which we must trudge our weary feet a week tomorrow.  Trips to that place have hardly been replete with joy since it was built – and sadly I can’t see this one being any different, given how things are panning out for us.  Deep joy!

31 Responses

  1. Fair review NFFC, in my opinion.

    Once the goal went in our heads went down and it was obvious we lacked a REAL leader out there to gee everyone up. CC didnt help in my opinion, standing calmly (or should that be bemused!) with his arms folded, placidly by the touchline. You cant imagine Neil “Colin” Warnock in that kind of pose, can you???

    Someone, somewhere has got to instill some passion and belief, especially when we go a goal down.

  2. We shook a leg for 45 mins but the reality is depressing we are not good enough for this level at the mo.Defence is a joke ,we are a niave team with a niave manager ENOUGH IS ENOUGH we will get turned over at palace then derby then i hope CC walks or they sack him.

    We need a radical shake up WE NEED LEADERS !WE NEED PASSION ! i just hope its not too late for the new regime that comes in.I think nffc you will be vindicated in your prediction that CC is emptied after derby game.


    WHAT A FIASCO ?????????????

  3. Missed the game I’m on assignment in Yokohama. Thought your observatins on our travelling fans was spot on from what I’ve witnessed over the years. It’s not looking good for Forest and yes, the signs are ominous – playing well but losing whilst the Bluebirds are only simmering in patches but looking a hard side to beat.

    Hopefully at the end of the year our culture and behaviour might improve somewhat when we move to our new home, though close to Ninian Park geographically, light years away in terms of comfort and facilities.

    Thoroughly enjoyed your report, best I’ve read for ages. I hope by the end of the season you’ll have proved your too good to go down!

  4. Bang on article yet again, the only thing we should be looking for is points, points, points and more points. I absolutely hate the glorious failure fans, Manager and CG spin, it’s such weak limp wristed losers talk. I hate sitting with and lsitening to losers which is why I’ve given up going this year. The big issue is we’ve got a Chairman who has pumped another £4m plus of his own money into the playing staff this year. What does he do, wait for CC’s real team to turn up (it will never happen, because the glorious failure card will be played time and time again). ND might say he’s an optimist (good), but, as a football Chairman is he a deluded fool with a yes man jolly nice chap as his right hand man (MA) telling him what he wants to hear? For me, therein lies the dilemna. It’s one man’s decision.

  5. This is disaster time, the manager wants to be judged after 10 games!! been and gone so sack him. Mark Arthur and Nigel Doughty’s silence speak volumes!! No leaders on the pitch, every week we have a different team, and a different formation and we are rock bottom of the division.
    For those wonderful Forest fans- I really mean that-because we all want us to do well-who think Calderwood should stay please wake up-look at the table and points tally-it is a disaster! We need to change the manager now he has lost it.

  6. Strange. I don’t care about the “scab” stuff any more (we must be about the same age 🙂 and that apart, I thought their fans were excellent. Ours were morons for baiting Dave Jones for something that he didn’t do though.

  7. I don’t care about it either, really – it’s just all a bit distasteful. And yes, the chants directed at Dave Jones were saddening.

    I’m not sure why he’s gone to the papers about it though – disgusting though it is, I doubt very much ours are the only morons who have chanted such things at him.

  8. Spot on review again. we looked like derby last season, playing well til we conceded then lost all will and direction. CC has to have a word with them about playing long-ball to earnie, he’s never going to be able to get a look in with the likes of purse at centre half. Where’s lee martin? He’d have been an ideal replacement for Anderson at HT as i thought tyson was poor today, as was everyone bar Anderson Garner and McCleary.
    The only way out of the bottom 3 is to start playing Warnock/Allardyce ‘style’. It’s crap but a lot less so than being in league 1 playing Yeovil, Leeds, Hereford etc.

  9. First game I went to yesterday this season, I didn’t want to bait the club anymore without seeing it for myself.

    From what I saw yesterday it was like any other game I have read the reports on for this season. First half some good chances and played well but second half I thought we lost our shape. However we still didn’t make the goalkeeper work.

    It is clear to me that we are lacking a leader on and off the pitch, we need a strong captain and also a strong manager. I was watching Colin on the touchline and he doesn’t say much does he. He looks deflated.

    Every week we play a different formation or a different team, no consistency. We are now hearing rumblings of player unrest which is going back to the days just before and during the Megson era.

    Like you say NFFC me and my mate were also saying we had alot of heavy legged players yesterday, Lewis looked good first 30 mins but then he went missing, Garner was clearly not fit. Fletcher and Lynch look poor poor buys to me, lets face facts if they are playing for palace and Brighton reserves they are not going to be upto much.

    We need a good shake up and if that means a new manager then so be it, the City ground was flat yesterday, we need a change bigtime, we need a new manager with new ideas, try something new from Corners, free kicks anything just to get a win. Also we have no urgency in the team, no quick corners no quick throws, it is all done at walking pace and this is when we are desperate for three points.

    I don’t buy these fans saying give him more time, you can’t be unlucky all season, will these fans still be so supportive of him when we get relegated. From what I witnessed yesterday I can see why we are bottom, something needs to give just to get us a win.

    No hard feelings Colin but we need some new ideas and for anyone else to think otherwise doesn’t care about the Future of NFFC.


  11. I agree. Without exception, not many teams appear to be relegated playing bad football (maybe derby in prem) but the point is that really did need to win at home yesterday.
    We can take it for granted we get trounced away from home because Mr Calderwood seems to be unable to do anything else other than lose. But at home, points are needed, yes it’s only October and it’s a long long season. But what better motivation for making a change does Doughty need? Change now and there’s a possibility that the players will respond and play footy for 90mins. Anyway, I’m not taking anything away from Cardiff here, top marks in getting 3 points. I think playoff potential def

  12. with regard to the chanting aimed at mr jones, remember who his first game back was against after all the abuse accusations died down, ? idiot platt’s forest v southampton, and he got a rousing reception that day from both sets of fans. bet he dont mention that in his forthcoming book. mardy welsh/scouse t**t. as for our lot what can you say that has’nt already been said, unlucky,no proper shooting boots,s**t at the back,no spark etc. great piece of journalism as ever, cheap 3/4 season ticket still up for grabs with sheep dip ticket thrown in at right price.

  13. Blimey. I thought we were excellent yesterday!! Not just in the first half either. How many chances did Cardiff create? One (and I’m not talking about heir pen). How many did Forest create? Four great ones and another 3-4 decent ones. But for their keeper, the post and two fabulous tackles, we’d have won at a canter.

    What was the one thing in common with all the great chances we created yesterday?? BALL PLAYED ON THE GROUND!! Crosses whipped in low and hard, ball played through the middle to run onto. Not this long/high ball/cross malaky which when we did, came to absolutely nothing.

    After the shambles against Ipswich, all I asked for from the players was 100% committment for 90 minutes and on the whole I think we got that. Yes there were one or two who seemed disinterested at times but overall, you can’t question anyone’s effort. Lack of ability/talent is a different story altogether.

    Finally, I thought Perch had a good game at RB, Wes was solid defensively but weak in distribution, Kelvin awful but Chambers looked calm and assured when he replaced him! Lynch defended very well too so I’m a bit surprised at the defence being labelled a shambles. They coped with anything Cardiff had pretty well, it was only their passing that let them down – and when there’s no movement in front of you, its difficult not to resort to a punt upfield.

    I think we did bloody well yesterday and WERE just unlucky not to win the match. And I’m still behind CC. Problem is, we’re approaching Christmas and we’re ALWAYS crap during the festive period under him so maybe a change is needed for the good of the club. Come on Doughty, get on the phone to your best mate and get Hoddle in.

  14. I was pleased with Perch; generally I am though to be fair. Wes did well in the air, although a few times he stood and watched when he should’ve intervened, Kelvin – as covered above – was simply dreadful. I thought Chambers was okay, and Lynch was too.

    However, whether it be by good work from our midfield or lack of endeavour from our visitors (I suspect the latter), they were never really tested thoroughly. And when Cardiff did get forward they creaked.

  15. Spurs have just sacked ramos ,and brought redknapp in.




  16. Radgie – a really good appraisal of the game and at last one I agree with. Going forward we posed a threat all match and Garner in particular looks a really good player. Judge us properly when we have McCleary, Earnshaw, Garner & Anderson all fit and playing at the same time. I really do think we will win more than we lose.

    The back four is still an issue and I am surprised that Breckin was not included on Saturday – however it is good to see Chambers finally get a chance in his actual position.

    The abuse Dave Jones got was worse than appalling – it was shameful. I would hope his wife and kids were not at the game, imagine how they would have felt. Dave Jones was found to be totally INNOCENT (a fact lost on A Block). It wasn’t funny, it was sick. I have written to the club today to call for A Block to be closed for at least one game – if you were singing that shit on Saturday you are not welcome.

    NFFC I am disappointed that you chose to ignore the incident in your report and by those of you who attempted to cover it up by the fact the Cardiff fans also sang some nasty songs to us. Fucking grow up!

  17. Scabs arent they what apear after your cut heals up Ah well the only thing that ever came from Wales that was any good was coal water shirley bassey and tom jones not much for a nation is is.You know the welsh are always singing about there wonderful country well if itrs so good why do they live here.Now back to Forest ur ur ur oh yes just two more games and Deadwood will be on his way not much else to talk about maybe we should write the abitchuary every week before the match

  18. It’s fair enough you moaning about the Cardiff fans with their ‘scab’ comments, but where is the damnation of our own idiotic fans chanting unjustified obscenities at Dave Jones?!

  19. Around four or five comments above yours.

    Barrowred: I think you, like many others, are taking things way out of proportion.

    The chants were despicable, as were those that chanted them – but it’s not like it’s a new thing; not that that makes it right. Indeed, I’ve read on various forums that Cardiff fans chanted similar things at him when he was Wolves manager. They chant songs at the likes of Lee Trundle suggesting he has AIDS – where do we draw the line on what is and isn’t acceptable to sing at football matches? Frankly, accepting criticism from Cardiff fans of all people seems rather ridiculous.

    Football appeals to pond life, as demonstrated ably by both sets of fans yesterday, that’s life.

    I fail to see why Jones is whining about something that happens to him week in week out specifically this week, aside from the fact he’s a Scouser and therefore whining comes very naturally to him. Yes, it was shameful, yes, I wasn’t happy to hear it – but he shouldn’t be losing any sleep over it, just as I won’t at any ‘scab’ taunting or the derogatory chanting I heard about Brian Clough coming from the sections of Cardiff fans in response to A Block.

    It’s very childish to have chanted such things, but the response is equally – if not more – so. Although I can understand why Jones might have wanted to divert attention away from the game, because Cardiff didn’t really offer much despite getting the win.

    Also, he shouldn’t have ‘wanker signed’ at the A Block in response – that was only going to exacerbate the situation. It’s true he had every right to feel aggrieved, but that’s what happens at football, he should have been professional enough to let it lie.

  20. Get off your moral high horses some of you. If one or two ‘fans’sing a derogatory song about a member of the opposition then you can guarantee that 200 others will think its funny and follow suit. Doesn’t make it right, but it happens. And I’m ashamed to say years ago I probably joined in the abuse. As did many of you??

    I’ve just got back from a rugby tournament where I watched proper sportsmen take hit after hit but not complain or roll around like bloody fairies and the fans have good natured banter then retire to the bar and drink together. Football is my game, but quite frankly some of the crap at the moment is boring me to death. Moan moan moan, players taking the p**s, clueless chairmen, I could go on but I want to go back to the pub.

    Put simply, I’d rather go to rugby now than football. And while CC is in charge thats what I’ll do despite the 5 season tickets my family have. Which is 5 less positive, proactive fans for the players.

    Come on guys, he was UNABLE to re-organise or motivate the team after half time. And all this guff about “ooh, wait ’til he’s got so-and-so fit again, then we’ll see the real CC team” is just rubbish. The team he picks week after week IS his team. He chose to sign almost every player we have on the books.

    Ah, sorry for ranting. Just cant see a way forward for us right now.

    Back to the pub!

  21. I too witnessed the torture. To be fair to colin, the changed team worked well 1st half, and we shoud’ve been ahead.

    There were a couple surprises second half though.

    First – is that we didnt get 2 up front to get back into the game while garner still had legs. Garner and Earnie are likely to be the best combo – Earnie is ineffective as a lone striker. That poor decision was what tactically cost us the chance to regain the advantage and probably cost us the match

    Second – Anderson off – inexplicable as he was doing great. (can he really not do more than 45 mins?). Tyson rather than davies was the gamble. Now the young ferret skinned charlton in his best ever game in Forest colours on the wing, but today he was a sorry shadow of that player.

    Thirdly – great to have fletcher and camp, but no attempt to get a decent central defender on loan? Can CC not see, as a former defender where the problem is?

    Finally, can anyone tell me what has happened to Lee Martin? Not even in the squad? Is he injured / suspended? He and Anderson would make a good combination.

    SURELY we have to win sooner or later, just by the law of averages if nothing else!

  22. I hope Breckin is back in the squad for the Palace game and give Wilson a break which he obviously needs.
    Forest seemed to start off the game motivated and wanting to play,but playing with the fear of not losing doesn´t help any of them.
    At last cc has put Perch at right back. How long have we been saying this. The team may continue to play well if we can score a goal first and then get another one.We might then see what this team can do if they can go out and enjoy their football. McCleary seems to be our only player unaffected by th Pressure.Let´s hope he keeps it up. Come on you Reds and give us Something to cheer about PLEASE !!!

  23. I cannot speak highly enough of Garath McCleary at the moment – arguably the only one playing without fear. Chambers did OK at centre-half as well, although I would also think that Breckin might be worth a run-out at some point. Anyone bemoaning the absence of Martin may have missed his last few appearances in a Red shirt, where he has been nothing short of woeful – mind you, so has Tyson…

    As for some of the comments near the top: to Marc, playing Allardyce-style hoofball failed on the occasions that the defence and midfield tried it yesterday. As Radgie says, there were several chances created from playing football the “right” way – not the manager’s fault that players who otherwise impressed (McCleary, Garner, McGugan, Perch) then missed the target…

  24. the Allardyce style i was refering to wasn’t hppfball more braking up the game, pressing opponents with the ball and working hard. I do’t at all think hooball can end in goals

  25. In which case Marc, I apologise for misreading your comment. But the way Forest played yesterday was effective, up until the point where one of our hapless forwards had to actually stick the bloody thing in the net!!

  26. I agree and said as much previously but because the lads are currently without the confidence needed for playing proper football i think it must be sacrificed for the win, concentrating on our style when we’re in the comfort of mid-table

  27. […] Dave Jones, but it was also clear that something had happened to prompt the abuse (I have read elsewhere that he directed a “Nescafe handshake” towards the Reds’ fans, rather than the […]

  28. I wonder what will happen now to the old men Cole and Brecks – unable to get in the squad on saturday? You’d think that a couple of older heads would be just what is required in these dark times. Given our obvious defensive frailties / lack of leadership / talk of punch ups / now would be a good time to restore Breckinbauer to the heart of defence?

  29. Talking of the Welsh theme and wallowing in our self pity we should of course be makng plans for Nigel, the man from the valleys Martinez should be procured with bountiful sacks of coal. 3 points on Tuesday please aside from the predictions of the tabloid BSE flock.

  30. A good 45 mins then back to the norm,Leicester went down last season on 52 points,can any one see us getting any thing like that total with this manager in charge.

  31. Another defeat, another we shouldn’t have lost it, another famous name being left out of the squad & so on & so on & so on…. CP tommorow AWAY & Derby on Sat AWAY. Our AWAY record 0pts, 4goals for 14against – any takers for 0 pts out of 6 and the back of CC?

    Don’t get me wrong but thanks to CC we got out of that league (& thanks for that) but we don’t want to start yoyoing between these leagues. CC hasn’t got the knowhow to do it in my opinion. He might have in the future but that’s not good enough right now for us.

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