Ten man Canaries send Reds to the basement..

Nottingham Forest – 1
Norwich City – 2

A combination of timing and that crippling sense of lethargy when needing to chronicle the demise of the Reds contributed to no match report yesterday, and a fairly sizably crippling hangover might well make this one pretty short.  In the absence of my ramblings the comments on my sulky post from yesterday seem to be doing a good job in providing an insight into how bloody infuriating we are at the moment.

Now, whether I’ve written it before or not I’m not sure, but I’m sure like most of you I was eyeing the Norwich game as the beginning of a run of fixtures that would see us start to amass some points and get ourselves into a healthier looking league position.  As it stands we supposedly had an ideal start – down to ten men, with the majority of the game with superior numbers, but of course, there’s the massive drag factor of the Sky TV cameras.

Not to mention that of our players.  Earnshaw picked up an injury during the warm up (prompting not unreasonable questions as to what our fitness/coaching team are actually doing!), so the long awaited return of, frankly, our only striker who has shown any indication of finishing off his chances is delayed once more.  It’s a worry, as his return was part of the longed-for resurgence.

So, the game.  The first half wasn’t so bad – aside from a few things.  Camp was the first keeper called into action, and did well to smother a chance that had fallen to Bell.  Forest too attacked with something approximating purpose, with Marshall in the Canaries goal being forced to punch clear as his defence was under pressure.  Cohen was proving our most potent conduit, crossing to Tyson who headed wide.

The half was panning out to be what it was, two not-particularly-good sides at least attempting to play some decent football, and given the defensive frailties of both sides, there were opportunities for attackers to have chances and draw saves from the goalkeepers.  Garner brought a final save from Marshall before Norwich were reduced to ten men – which would surely open up the game for the Reds?

Tyson burst down the middle with a clear run to goal, and was scythed down pretty much on the 18 yard line.  Whilst I reckon it probably was a freekick rather than a penalty, it would’ve been nice to have a bit of luck in our favour on a decision like that.  As it was, Doherty was sent off for a professional fowl, and the freekick was taken by Anderson – squaring to Thornhill who struck the ball on target, but insufficiently to beat Marshall.

Norwich withdrew Hoolahan for Otsemobor to rebalance their side in the wake of losing their captain, and then immediately went up the Forest end and scored – Bell crossing for Patterson to volley into the ‘net from 12 yards or so.  So within two minutes the stalemate was broken – in favour of the team with ten men!

You could see that Forest had the right intentions to try to take advantage of their extra man, but it was tentative and whilst putting some degree of pressure on in the first half, with headed chances for Garner etc, it didn’t really look all that convincing.  Just as it wasn’t looking so, though, Anderson latched onto a Garner throughball which put him through on goal and able to curl the ball into the net to make it 1-1 five minutes before half time.

At half time, aside from presumably telling the lads they didn’t need to make an effort for the next 45 minutes, Smoulds introduced Garath McCleary to the action in place of Matt Thornhill who was struggling with an injury.  And Forest were, well, the were starting to show signs of the ‘let’s hoof it up to Tyson’ game that we are all painfully familiar.

Garner got on the end of an Anderson cross, but again was denied by Marshall in the Norwich goal; Cohen too was denied by the ‘keeper after a decent cross by Tyson looked bound for the top corner.  It had the feeling of one of those games were clumsy Forest would labour and create chances, and ultimately not take them and end up with a disappointing draw.  Frustrating as that would have been, it can always get worse, however!

Leroy Lita would be the architect of our downfall, taking the ball forward to Croft who crossed to, well, three Forest players who conspired to see the ball end up in the back of the net.  Chambers was credited with the goal, Cohen was close to it too.  Ultimately, it was predictably calamitous!  Norwich proceeded to shut up shop, Forest proceeded to trudge around and never get back into the game.

As regular readers will know, I’m not a fan of booing – but it was a pretty shameful showing, and leaves us back on the bottom of the pile whilst we contemplate tuesday’s trip to fellow strugglers Doncaster – assuming of course the game doesn’t get snowed off, which is a possibility.  Smoulds seems to have pivoted from tolerated (and even liked) to being villified again, and frankly, I’m left feeling like I can’t really be arsed to keep writing about it!

23 Responses

  1. I feel sorry for Lee Camp,trying to keep clean sheets with dithering wilson and chambers as defenders… I bet he would be glad to see our captain Breckin back.
    A clean sheet at donny would be a start and should be achievable….depending on which Forest team shows up..
    If Forest only raise their game against better opposition then I´m not looking forward to the next 6 pointers coming our way.. Wilson on the bench for a couple of games Please.
    Bring Breckin and Fletch in now !!!!!

  2. You weren’t the only one with a ‘I’m sick of this’ inspired hangover this morning – mine was also insprired by the England v SA rugby match. Surprised you had the discipline to post a match report – mne would have been briefer but less balanced! No fan of booing either but that was justified after the woeful second half. I am nowe not at all optimistic and frustrated that the obvious lack of on – and off field – leadership has not been noticed and addressed. Until that is resolved all talk of tactics, formation etc is pointless. THis is still the first PMR I look for, so top marks for persistence.

  3. Thoroughly depressed about the result , simply not good enough. They reverted to last seasons ‘hoof it to tyson’ down the channel routine, I mean, why spend a million quid on a kid if your not going to pass the ball to him. norwich were always going to sit back, and i thought when mccleary came on, we would be using the width and attemting to pass them to death, but no, revert to hoof in behind and watch nathan struggle and jostle all evening.

    i think cohen has been our best player this season but his delivery from dead balls isnt good enough, and hasnt been for a while. i know mcgugan is suspended but surely anderson can hit a dead ball?

    the defence was a shambles, again. chambers is a liability and just 2 weeks ago after birmingham he felt the need to go to the papers to tell us how good he is and how birmingham players werent up for it, by all accounts we’re due a pasting at st andrews now, he was responsible for the goal again, he nearly cost us a point at bristol and he was poor at pride park.

    there’s no captain on the pitch, never rated breckin as a captain but you dont know what you’ve got till its gone, why isnt he playing?

    All managers make decisions the fans can’t understand but colin’s making some ridiculous decisions at every turn, he’s not picking the right team, he’s not taking his leadership out on to the pitch, he’s obviously crap at HT team talks and his substitions are ridiculous, why take heath off and bring cohen back? if he really wanted to take a defender off, he should of taken off chambers, or switched it to 3 at the back and gamble, not play your most creative player in defence.

    i have just about given up now, we’ve had excuses for our form but the excuses have dried up and we’re still crap. I will try and be optimistic about donny, after all, there certainly was a change in fortune after the last time we played them but we need changes all over the park. we really miss mcgugan and hopefully he can ignite something, especially if earnshaw gets fit!

    we have to win 3 games before chritmas, the games coming up are vital because the new year will be tough and a new manager will have too much to do in too little time.

    sorry colin, your time is up, thanks for an eventful 2.5 years but your out of you’re depth.

  4. Keep up the articles they’re so much better than the tripe in the NEP and, am I at the same match, Colin Fray.
    From the “sit at home and watch it on SKY camp” the commentary in my view was excellent. It was great to here an unbiased opinion and clearly they were having a go at Forest’s tactics second half. Hoof it up the middle for Tyson to chase, forget about width, where’s the passing? where have the wingers gone?. In short they felt sorry for us. I don’t think it’s rocket science to figure out where these instructions came from at half time, which is why after the match I was disgusted that he turns around and has a go at our young team (even if they were shite). One man lost us that match.
    I for one don’t want pity from the neutrals, I just want CC to get out of my club fast. Don’t get me wrong I’ll be there on Saturday (with the nutters in the junior reds section), and we’ll be fully behind the team and no booing whatever the result. BUT, we need a new Manager to avoid relegation NOW, cus if we wait any longer no Manager of any quality will want third division football next year.
    What’s the remit for the new Manager … simple someone who knows how to get his team to play in the final third of the pitch.

  5. We are all in the same boat nffc SICK AS PARROTS keep it up though fella .You are a top blogger true red and all who comment on the forum look for your reports.

    CC will go and hopefully we will scrape survival.Hey do you fancy rapping in your job and me and thee form the new forest management team.


  6. Every forum is at the end of there tether with CC and whats being dished up.He wont go so A MASS DEMO AT THE CG ON SATURDAY SHOULD TIP THE SCALES OF CHANGE LETS KICK IT OFF HERE FIRST AND SPREAD THE WORD.

  7. Good report, NFFC. I watched the Norwich game on Sky (sorry, I live in London) and have the following observations: 1) Tyson = best Forest player by miles but isn’t a natural goalscorer; 2) Camp = excellent: sign him!; 3) Cohen = excellent, why was he moved into defence; 4) Wilson and Chambers = drop them both, sadly; 5) Everyone else – much of a muchness. How long is Earnshaw out for, anyone know?

  8. Just when you think we might get some points Forest again fail to win on the Sky cameras.

    I watched the game on sky, I pitty anyone who paid £27 to watch that, wonder why only 18000 turned up.

    How many more spineless performances are us fans going to take from a Colin Calderwood team.

    Any fan who doesn’t want him out obviously don’t care about NFFC. I have been on every forum now and the majority have had enough.

    Apart from Camp and Cohen yesterday the rest were shocking. Kelvin Wilson is an absolute joke of a player, no wonder why he couldn’t get in the Preston North end team. Me and my mate said after ten minutes that we would lose this, they didn’t look bothered, I couldn’t believe how much time and space they had the wings.

    2 Wins from 18, Get Big Sam in now, who gives a shit if it is not the pretiest footy in the world, I would rather us win matches and stay in the league than go down again.

    I was going to pay the ten pounds to watch Barnsley next week but forget that, I really can’t be arsed and that is said state of affairs when I have supported the club since I was 7. I just can’t be bothered anymore, discount prices or no discount prices.

    Until CC goes I will not be going down again.

    Good blog though, keep it up, you tell it how it is? Unlike the post and BBC sport which somebody said above.

    The end.

  9. Oh yeah, booooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

  10. Ian (Hall)

    Im sat in the Bridgford End so Im interested to know if a free kick was the right decision when Tyson got legged up? What did Sky (and no doubt the endless replays) show????

    We all thought it was a pen – but then again we would, wouldn’t we….

  11. Miles out the area, defo free kick.

  12. Het, nffc, you’re doing a great job – just don’t get as bitter and twisted as the rest of us. I haven’t said much this season, because I can’t be bothered. As long as you keep on, we’ll be able to sit back and let you put in all the effort!

    I haven’t said much, because we have all said it already. A couple of seasons ago, I commented after our home game against Bristol City that our only tactic was to punt the ball over the top for Agogo to chase (remarkably, Tyson was injured that day). It was the same yesterday – it has been the same on numerous games inbetween. Any decent side would know that if you are playing against 10 men for 70 minutes, you pass the ball around and make the opposition run themselves into the ground. It may take you some time, but you will score eventually, because they cannot do 11 men’s work. What you don’t do, is give them the ball back as soon as you get it, because your racing-snake striker cannot win the hopeful long-balls-over-the-top against 2 centre halves who are happy to stamp him into the ground. I’ve got things with more tactical nous up my left nostil than CC has between his ears.

    He has always been slated because he’s a defender, and he has no attacking awareness. That’s true. But, surely, he can spot that his defence is a little short of his own playing standard. If we were so defence minded that we were the 0-0 specialists we would have mor epoints than we have now.

    The great Brian Clough was an attacker – yet his defences were usually sound. He is quoted as saying that he hated playing against big strong centre-halves, so guess what he always had at the heart of his defence? Look at the D*rby and Forest defenders he had, and you’ll see (Des being an exception, but Psycho did enough hard tackling for two). Why can’t CC work out the kind of attackers/tactics that were hard work for defenders, and get us to play that way?

    What the bloody hell was our formation supposed to be in the second half? 4-1-3-2? 4-3-1-1-1? More like 1-2-2-1-1-1-1-1, I’ve seen more width on a twiglet.

    You see? What’s new? We were saying this 2 years ago.

  13. By the way – Brian Rice – no thanks to Big Sam. He’s got more desire to succeed anyway – why would he come to a side rooted to the bottom of the Championship, when he is likely to get offered a place much nearer the top later in the season?

  14. you heard it first here
    Its 7.45 on Saturday night, i’m coming out of the Pitch Diner and look through the door into the glass seating area and see Doughty, Arthur and CC on the pitch next to the tunnel. I do not know how long they had been there but i watched for about 5mins with Doughty,it appeared, being very demonstrative, Arthur hands in pockets looking at the green stuff. CC did not, from that distance, seem to respond but at the end he strode down the tunnel followed by the other two at some distance behind, not good body language from anyone.
    has he been sacked?
    has he walked?
    was it a final warning with a slap on the wrists?
    Lets hope it was one of the first cases
    CC is a tactical flop, his actions make reasonable players perform poorly, apart from Chambers and Wilson who have not got a prayer at this level

  15. From your comments it looks like a demo against cc is on the cards now regardless of what happens at doncaster,if the match goes ahead,.
    It´s sad and we had hope and keep giving him another chance but I think his time has come.
    The 2nd half was an absolute shambles.
    He must know he is now on borrowed time,and a demo may help to persuade doughty to act. The sooner the better. There is no way we can go back down again…Desperate measures are now needed !!!!!!!!!!!!

  16. The main problems with Forest yesterday was lack of movement and urgency. There was no end of times during the game where the full backs had the ball, looked up for options and saw there weren’t any. They were forced to either turn back or go route 1. No one offered them the short pass for a give and go and no one seemd to be able to make room to receive the ball down the channels. Its worse when we get an attacking throw in. Everyone seems scared of moving to create space and are incapable of actually getting into the box to be able to flick the throw on. The set pieces were awful. There is simply no excuse for not being able to cross a ball. When was the last time we actually scored a headed goal from a corner? This may stem from the fact that, as a team, we don’t seem to be able to actually win a header!

    During the second half, Tyson managed to get clear of the centre half down the left channel but no one was busting a gut to get in the box for a cross. In the end he is forced to go it alone as he doesn’t have the skill to be able to hold the ball up and ends up losing possession.

    Once Norwich were down to ten men we needed someone in the middle of the park that could actually move the ball out wide with pace so that we could get in behind their defence. Unfortunately we had Perch who struggles to pass a ball 10 yards. When we did manage to get out wide, the pass made the wide player have to stop and collect the ball instead of actually running on to it. As has been said before, we simply didn’t have a leader on the park.

    If Calderwood can’t see the problems with the side he should come and watch a game from high up in the stands or maybe he should simply decide to move on as he doesn’t seem to be able to learn from his mistakes.

  17. Nothing much more to be said. I’m out in the middle east and follow Forests fortunes via this website and the occasional game shown on our version of Sky out here. This game and the Derby game were shown and I have to say that as someone who has followed the Reds for many years (including being a season ticket holder for a number of those) I’m currently at my lowest ebb with the side and have been for a while now. The debacle against Yeovil in the playoffs a couple of seasons ago was humiliating but I’m not sure much has changed since? The guys who I watch the games with can’t believe how bad Forest have become. Yes we are a small city team who Cloughy worked miracles with but surely we are better than this? Somebody mentioned that the last manager who produced anything like half decent football was Harty and I have to agree. Since then a combination of has beens both players and managers, combined with completely inept management at Director level (Mark Arthur is a complete no-hoper in my book) and you have this result. I’ll never say I’m embarrassed to be a Forest fan because they are in my blood and I’ll always wear the shirt with pride but its pretty bloody hard to hold my head up when the kids I teach come into school and laugh about my team and its performances.

  18. Oh yes, I’m having a field day – didn’t really get on ther web yesterday so I’m catching up with all your comments now. I said it so many a time and only recently before the start of the 4 match run that as soon as we lose I await your comments. As sure as sure, you haven’t dissapointed me 1 bit. Not 1 bit.

    I’ll say it for the LAST TIME (I hope), CC IS OUT OF HIS LEAGUE (for now, he might be better with more experience but too late 4 us.)

    Even if we beat Donny (if as u lot say the match goes ahead) all I see is a long hard struggle with CC in. As for the last time we had a decent manager in, that was not Harty, it was the formidable duo who were overlooked because they failed to get us into the PO after taking us from the brink of relegation of MUGSON left (more like finally pushed out – ND I hope u remember that season!!)

    As for looking at Fitness coaches/physios, well you finaly woke up – I expressed many a time concern over our injury rate in ths league (& as I’m typing – the 1 below us too) is tragic.

    Finally, assuming CC is still in that chair come thhe Jan Sales, he’s after a Dundee Utd striker & sent Platy to look at him too (according to the Daily Mirror 2day.)

    PS – Keep up the neutral articles. It’s the best form of honesty

  19. the guy plays for motherwell not dundee

  20. Anyone pick up on Colin Fray 2nite? “The Management of Forest are mindful that when we’ve been relegated before that they’ve not acted soon enough”.
    Where’s this from then Colin ???
    Also, I think the Beeston Red comment about MA and CC might have been a reaction to one of Doughty’s jokes.

  21. not from where i was

  22. I liked the headline that cc might go and take the swindon managers job,but then thinking about it they are Supposed to be a smaller club than us and he would have to take a pay cut,for sure. I can dream can´t I ?

  23. Hey Yiannaki, chill mate.

    Most of the comments on here over the last 2 seasons have said just the same thing.

    Virtually all of us expressed our doubt that CC was the right man for NFFC from the start. The debacle against Yeovil, followed by a lucky promotion, followed by 2 wins from 18 hasn’t changed anyones view. Don’t fall out with us, we’re on the same side!
    Equally though, I can sympathise with those who have backed him. Their reasons are simple; stability, give him a chance, who else?

    Strangely, we have played better football this season than the past 2. But we just can’t win. And unless something dramatic happens, we’re relegated.
    We had shite luck for loads of games, then it all turned in our favour against the sheep. Have we pushed on from that? No. In fact, it’s gone the other way again.
    The positives against Brum have long since been forgotten, I’m afraid.

    The only dramatic thing left is to get rid.

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