You fill up my senses.. with pure dullness and boredom..

king of the dirty bastards..

Chris Morgan: king of the dirty bastards..

Nottingham Forest – 0
Sheffield United – 1

Cor blimey, whatever you’ve heard about this game if you didn’t go, it was probably worse.  A terrible advert for the Championship, and a turgid game between two dour teams on a freezing cold night.  The kind of game that makes you wonder why you bother, which was summed up ten minutes from kickoff as the familiar sound of ‘thunk’, ‘thunk’, ‘thunk-thunk’, ‘thunk thunk thunk’ filled the air as Forest fans filed silently back to their cars, and their seats thunked back into the ‘unoccupied’ position, such was the utter inevitability of us failing to get a goal this evening.

If you wanted to sum up the good bits, both sides had two excellent chances – the Blades scored one of theirs, ours were both spurned.  The first chance came very early, Beattie drew a decent save from Camp with a header, and the ball fell to Halford who unfeasibly, from very short range, conspired to miss the target completely and hit the side netting.  A very early let off indeed.  One of our less excellent but half-chances fell to Garner who headed a Cohen cross just wide.

This was followed up with an excellent chance – Cohen slotted an absolutely sublime ball through the proverbial eye of a needle to find the run of Robert Earnshaw, who bore down one-on-one with Paddy Kenny, only to see the big keeper make the save.  It was a good save, don’t get me wrong, but you would expect Earnie to be making him work a bit harder than that.  The ball spilled out to Paul Anderson who spannered it over from the penalty spot – I was convinced it must’ve deflected, it was such a poor shot!

Half an hour into the game, (which was punctuated mainly by chav-like adolescents bemoaning their inability to fulfill their ambitions to work in the mining industries, which they somehow blamed upon similarly too-young-to-be-fucking-involved Forest fans), the Blades took the lead.  Kilgallon crossed to the back stick, Beattie headed it back across goal and then I could make out much at all aside from it going in, and Forest players protesting.  Apparently Brian Howard volleyed it in, so there you go.

Just before half time came probably our best chance – Tyson timed a diagonal run absolutely perfectly to latch onto another excellent through ball (this time from Garner), but the striker-cum-winger snatched at the chance with his right foot, and missed the target completely, which is pretty unforgivable.  Half time saw chuntering from the fans, and an increasing sense of inevitable defeat – as well as the questioning of why we’d bothered our arses to come out on a cold evening!

The second half started with Forest building from the back, then James Perch giving the ball back to the Blades.  I have often defended Perchy, and tonight he did well at winning the ball (aside from when he scythed Quinn down), but his distribution – not his strongest point in any game – tonight was abysmal.  Of course, it doesn’t help that his teammates generally don’t make space, or make themselves available for a pass, but even when they did it seemed to go wrong for Perchy tonight.

Probably the nearest thing to a chance in the second half was a limp-wristed header from Earnshaw from an Anderson cross, which Kenny didn’t exactly struggle to keep out.  However, Smoulds of course had an ace up his sleeve, oh yes.  He withdrew the clearly-still-not-match-fit Earnshaw and Brendan Moloney with the terrifying attacking potency of Arron Davies and Matt Thornhill, with Perch switching to right-back.

In fairness, we did start to try to pass it around a bit more, but a weak shot from the edge of the area for Anderson and an unlikely diving header from Garner were about all that came of it.  In fact, the best chance of the second half for us was when Kilgallon lofted the ball back to Kenny with Tyson threatening to burst through.  Of course, I thought it was against the rules for a goalkeeper to handle a backpass, but Kenny had to palm this one over the bar.  The referee gave the corner, which of course, we wasted.

Did we deserve to get anything other than nothing for the game?  Probably not, although it’s hard to argue the Blades were the better team – perhaps they just gave as much as they needed to; I must admit, casting an envious eye down their squad list I expected more from them; but they too have a mediocre-at-best manager so perhaps that explains it.  They’re still a bunch of cheating moany buggers as well.  Ho hum!

Even Smoulderwood was unusually down on things – he said we were second best; normally he always finds a spuriously positive spin to put on our many dour performances, but not tonight it seems!  To say that he was gleefully talking up two home games to keep closing the gap, it’s a bit depressing.  We’re still 3 points from safety (4 if you include goal difference), although Watford have a game in hand.  We’re one game away from the half way point of the season.  

What’s more depressing than anything is that I can’t bring myself to get behind the anti-Smoulderwood protests.  I fear the worst under his stewardship, I certainly can’t see him taking us to be a challenger in this division – currently I can’t see him keeping us in it.  But I always live in fear that whilst we may well be better off with a different manager, you can never be too sure who the next one will be!  Still, I’ll no doubt still be there on saturday for another healthy serving of disappointment!

So in summary, Sheffield United were average and dirty, the referee was garbage, and Forest were below average and wasteful.  An awful game of football on a bloody cold night.  We may or may not have deserved to lose, but I think we probably did – we missed the chances we had, we let them score – it’s as simple as that really, and it’s not good enough to secure survival.

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30 Responses

  1. Thanks for the excellent report NFFC (much appreciated as ever by those of us that can’t always get to the game). Depressing to read but it must have been much worse to sit through.

    A Cov fan on a forum say that Lewis McGugan was the best player he’d seen at The Ricoh this season. I assume he was missing through injury tonight?

    The blades clearly have more experience and you can’t help but think if we had a couple of older heads out there with all the promising youngsters we’d have won a few more games. Breckin anyone?!

    I understand your reluctance to get on Smoulders back because;-

    a) We’d all love him to be successful
    b) He seems a nice bloke
    c) Lack of obvious decent candidates to replace him

    But as you point out it will be half way through the season on Saturday. How long do you give him before you have to try something different? Relegation would be an enormous setback. If we lose to Blackpool then that is surely the end for Colin.

  2. Sounds awful…I even switched off the commentary at half time.
    I keep saying it but why on earth is our captain Brecks not playing. I was sure he would be playing tonight and he is not even in the squad !!!
    chambers is preferred.. I hope Brecks stays but if I were him watching another goal given away and another 3 points lost I would want to go to a club with a manager who appreciates my talents.
    Wake up cc and get our captain back for the Blackpool match !!!!!

  3. I support Forest but I have accepted relegation now.
    Keep Calderwood on and he will resign at the end anyway.
    From alot of sources I have read that the team on paper should be good enough to stay up.
    I never thought that CC would get us promoted but I cetainly thought we would stay up.

  4. Listening to the game was pretty painful. Half time antics by Colin Frey and co was about the highlight of this dourness. Tonight all that has been positive was lacking by the sounds of things and something occured to me tonight, how many chances do our strikers need? The defence are useless and a breath of fresh Brecks might help a bit but that’s two games in a row where technically (i.e. if you only look at really good chances missed which of course doesn’t really tell the whole story) we could have won both games if the boys had just taken the few fairly simple chances that they have had. Shooting practice alround in training this week I feel. I hate Sheffield Utd by the way and have dreaded this fixture since August.

  5. I could not believe the crap that was played by Forest last night.

    We keep CC in charge we are going down. If you believe the bullshit coming out of CC’s mouth in the post match interviews you are being conned.

    He changed the formation at least 10 times tonight, the players looked lost, they could not string any passess together apart from 2, 2 minute spells, 1 either side of the half. You knew SU were going to score, when they did they shut up shop. They are a well organised side, but nothing going forwards. When they scored the confidence completely drained from our team.

    The players are not playing for the Manager, you can tell they are waiting for him to get the chop.

    Some of the Forest fans started leaving 20 mins before the end. 15 mins to go the SU fans chants of “cheerio” rang out.

    There is a hatred of CC on the terraces from the vast majority of fans I sit with.

    No booing from me, but I would sack the idiot first thing this morning. He will spend millions getting us nowehere.

    After last night we are on life support, and you can switch the machine off with CC in charge.

    GET RID THIS MORNING, PLEASE GOD !

  6. I have backed CC up to now because there have been flashes of good play at times and I felt that once the younger guys got to grips with the championship and we had Garner/Tys and Earnie fit, we would start to climb the league. I have now run out of patience with him for playing thta plank Wilson when Brecks is not even in sight. The best couple of games in recent matches were with Brecks in the team. Brecks may not be cultured but there would be no half arsed clearances to the opposition as per Wilson last night and against Norwich when they scored. Brecks in on Saturday or CC out at 5pm for me. He has now had his time but for God sakes do not bring Davies in, we had enough of trying to defend 1-0 leads over the last couple of years!

  7. at least you don’t make a 300 mile round trip for every home game…didn’t bother last night, and glad by the sounds of things

  8. What about the substition? A half fit Earnie is worth keeping on ahead of Garner. Jees, he is woeful. Sorry, but the guy isn’t fit to wear the shirt. He’ll plough into the odd tackle, sure, but usually conceding a free-kick. And he rarely chases back. When he did he gave (another) foul away, it was that bad even Wilson shook his head and muttered “for f**K sake”.

    Apart from Wes I don’t think anyone came out of the game with any credit. Well, maybe Cohen and Tys for effort, but thats it.

    And who the **** tells the players that hoofing the sodding ball up to our diminutive striker is a good idea????? Chris Morgan actually starting laughing at one stage after he’d won yet another header.

    Oh, and send Lynch back to Brighton reserves please, we looked better when Heath was playing.

  9. Just forgetting about the manager for a minute, we need a couple of leaders on that pitch. Wilson should be replaced as captain, he is not animated or vocal enough and really needs to concentrate on his own performance before worrying about the rest of the team. Not sure why Brecks is not playing but would like to see him back in the side. A couple of experienced signings in January please !

    It is funny how people view things Mattyboy, I really like Garner and last night thought his effort was good, I know he gave a way a few fouls but he has that aggression we need now. Hey ho, thats what football is about – opinions.

  10. a) CC was stupid enought to say 7 points from 3 games. I was laughing when I read it because a)I knew it wouldn’t happen, b) I heard it all b4 & saw nothing & c) Places unduly pressure when theres already enough.

    b)Will people finaly sit up & wake up CC MUST GO NOW if we’re to get out of this match – we have the players, we don’t have a manager good enought o command them. CC sorry, txs 4 al you’ve done BUT ADMIT YOUR OUT OF YOUR LEAGUE HERE. 1-0 defeats, 0-0 drawrs r not going to keep us in the Championship.

    c)ND – WAKE UP. We understand the need for stability but change is needed JUST TO STAY UP.

    d) The change must be made now so as the new Manager has a little extra time to see if & what we need in the club.

    I can’t be bothered to read the whole report because I’m fed up wth the same & same again. CC MUST GO!

  11. Last night said it all for me. One of the most upsetting experiences I’ve had as a supporter sitting in the lower BC and watching forest.

    It is clear to me that all of the Forest fans have been conned by this joke of a Manager.

    Who’s the new Manager is all I want to know because I want to stay up?

    There are a lot of very angry Forest supporters sitting in the stands and it’s going to boil over pretty damn quickly, and there’s no doubt that Doughty and Arthurs reputation is going to be shot as well. Like it or not there’s a lot of innocent victims when war breaks out.

    WHERE’s OUR PRIDE ???

  12. Half way through the season on saturday 23 played.

    The stats

    we need at least 50 points to stay up ! teams who have around 25 at mo have a fighting chance.WE ARE MILES OF THE PACE ALREADY I FEEL THAT THE DAMAGE IS ALREADY DONE.

    Forest once again are the architects of there own downfall the supporters who are the club are suffering every bloody one of us.We have failed to act a month a go and we will be playing leage 1 football next season BLOODY LOSERS

  13. Why all the hate for Calderwood?

    Sure he’s useless, but if you lent a ten year old your Ferrari, would anyone be bollocking the ten year old when he drives through next door’s lounge window?

    Doughty and McArthur are the people who got us in to this mess and they are the only ones who can get us out.

  14. the really sad bit about recent weeks is – there are some half decent managers out of work who i’m sure ND and MA could and should have gone out and sounded a few of em out , maybe this has happened behind closed doors, we’ll never know because everything that goes off inside the city ground is like there little secret and we’re not privey to it. As redric has said the damage is probably already done – league one a beckoning, but one name who did for another sleeping giant only 18 months ago in the same position as us keeps coming into my head , and hey we gave him his big break into profesional football so. GO AND GET ROY KEANE BEFORE SOMEBODY ELSE DOES AND PUT SOME FIRE INTO FOREST AGAIN PLEASE – ND&MA ps cracking sum up off last nights dismal game NFFC

  15. I sat right behind the dugout last night and noticed a few things.

    We have a talented young right back in Brendan Moloney, one for the future, but he looked nervous last night against some of the big Sheff Utd players. However, he coped bravely and looked very good on the ball. However, CC kept shouting instructions at him and after a while I think it was affecting his concentration and confidence. If he’s good enough for selection then let the lad play, but don’t coach him from the sidelines.

    CC lost his temper, throwing his bottle of water at the dugout, the pressure is starting to show.

    And comedy moment has to be when CC popped down the tunnel, halfway through the 2nd half, presume he needed a leak, when he returned some comedian shouted ‘we’re two one up now Colin’ he didn’t see the funny side.

    I thought the side were very poor until the substitutions when we played a trad 4-4-2, rather than making strikers play on the left wing.

    Time for CC to do the decent thing.

  16. Last night was abysmal. I’ve long backed CC to come good but playing the long ball game for 88 of the 90 minutes is just plain ridiculous. To a man we were pathetic. Anderson looked like the only one who wanted the ball but was crap when he had it. Noone else deverves ay credit whatsoever. Cohen got MoM presumably for the most aimless running around by a red shirted player.

    Time to go I’m afraid.

  17. i’m not arsed about last night, sheff utd is always tough for us. just scratch last night and move forward. we played really well at cov, we can still stay up. we just need to keep supporting them and forget last night. i am fed up will piss poor injuries though. earnie in a warm then mcgugan the morning of a game, thats just really poor and needs sorting asap

  18. No point blaming the players.

    You could tell that when in possession they hadn’t a clue where our own players were. Their confidence had completely gone. We couldn’t string 2 passes together. All down to the Manager and Coach.

    Redric is spot on, damage already done, but more importantly there is longer term damage being done to the club by keeping Calderw…. (errrrh I can’t bear to think of the name).

    All the pro Calderwoods are going to keep supporting and in 3 years time stood watching around the side of the pitch with 100 or so other supporters and watching us play Hucknall Town & Ilkeston. I give it the 3 years before Burton overtake us and then these so called loyal supporters will have their Homer moment (Ddddoohhhh).

  19. went last night and it was simply dreadful-both teams were poor. Cant really think of any positives, like Paul above I like Garner-he does give too many free kicks away- but I thought he battled well last night. I am no fan of Calderwood but can we blame him for last nights woeful performance? I suppose ultimately the answer is yes because he has stated he is happy with his squad and he picks the team, sets the tactis and has to motivate them?!! But last night a lot of players were below par and performed poorly. Unfortunately that Forest performance had relegation witten all over it. Why oh why did we continue to hoof the ball up front all game, when it was so obvious we were getting absolutely nowhere-it was incredibly frustrating and annoying.
    Forest can do the business i.e. Palace away, Barnsley at home etc but it is too infrequent and we take one step forward and two steps back- if (and its a BIG IF) we keep the manager we must get at least 4 quality additions in January to have a chance of staying up!!

  20. You can have Pele, Maradonna, Beckenbauer, Cruyff and bloody Charlton in our side. CC would not have a clue.

    PLEA TO NOTTS POLICE … ARREST CC ON HIS WAY INTO NOTTM, KEEP HIM AWAY FROM THE CG SO WE HAVE A CHANCE OF STAYING UP.

  21. thought i would copy this from sheff utd blog……

    Make no mistake, Forest were rubbish, easily the worst team we have met this season including Charlton, who at least had a go at us. Forest were like Doncaster Rovers, only not as good in all departments.

  22. Agree with Paul and Tony on Garner.

    Gives away too many free kicks but then he actually makes tackles which is a novelty for a Forest player. He also wins lots of free kicks by sticking his body between the ball and the defender and rarely gives possession away.

    Not bad for a forward being played ???? by an inept manager.

    I thought he was our best player last night – admittedly few to choose from.

  23. 4/5 new players. Given a fully fit squad, who gets replaced? Camp is a given “new” player so only 4 more allowed. You don’t need to put the names of the new players, just say who should be replaced. I’ve put the team/sub together based on what seems to be the concensus of this blog as to who should/shouldn’t be in the team and a 4-4-2 formation which everyone is crying out for.

    GK Camp
    LB Bennett
    CB Breckin
    CB Morgan
    RB Perch
    LM Cohen
    CM Moussi
    CM McGugan
    RM Anderson
    FW Earnshaw
    FW Garner

    GK Smith
    DF Chambers
    MF Thornhill
    MF McCleary
    FW Tyson

  24. Spot on Radgie, but who do we play in midfield with Moussi out injured. Think this is part of the problem – we need a big strong ball winner to do the simple stuff; tackle, hold, pass to play makers such as Cohen, McGugan and Anderson.

    Also think we need to buy in an experienced centre half as, whilst he is 100% better than Wilson (Wilson seems to think he is considerably better than he actually is – how else do you explain his oh so casual approach?), I’m not sure he is the answer long term. Buy in a decent centre half and have Brecks on the bench instead of Chambers.

    Only other thought would be to play Bennet at centre half (this was his preferred position at Walsall) and play Heath at left back – Lynch is useless to he can clear off back to Brighton reserves; far to casual, just like Wilson in fact!

    Most of all, we need a leader – ironically the only way we’ll get one is if the centre half or centre midfielder we buy in is up for the job !!

    Missed last nights game, but went to Coventry (in with their fans!) and we really should have taken three points had it not been for rubbish defending (especially Lynch and Wilson) which leads to us giving away cheap goals and we then miss loads of excellent chances – Garner, McGugan, Earnshaw and McCleary all guilty !!

  25. CC LEAVE!! STILL WAITING!!! Sorry but enough is enough. He wanted 10, he got them ,he wanted players back, he’s close to a full team, twice he sadi he wanted X no of pts, twice he’s been left with egg on his face. LEAVE CC! NOW NOW NOW!!!

  26. Looks like I’m on my own regarding Garner then!!
    Maybe I’m doing him a disservice. After all, I’m expecting him to play up front and score 10-15 goals this season. Not gonna happen if he’s playing left wing right back, is it.

    Look at Radgies team. On paper that has to be a top ten side, doesn’t it?
    So why aren’t we………

  27. I like Garner – up front though; he shouldn’t be in midfield, or at worst he should be in the ‘Jack Lester’ position.

    I like his passion, his workrate and his ‘niggle factor’ which we lack elsewhere in the team – he makes an utter nuisance of himself and whilst he concedes freekicks, he wins a fair few too.

    He is becoming a bit borderline on the petulance though – he frequently moans at referees, and last night shoved Halford (I think) for no good reason. I don’t like to see our players behaving like that. It’s a fine line though.

  28. WELL DONE RADGIE !! Pity we can´t photocopy,sign it or make a banner from it!!!
    A big WHERE IS BRECKIN ??banner would be nice to display if the idiot ,who claims his young inexperienced side are still learning, doesn´t play our experienced captain who is also the best header of the ball !! Well Wilson can bloody well learn after we are mathematically safe,and not before !!

  29. I think people have misunderstood. I wasn’t posting my idea of what the matchday squad should look like. The concensus on here seems to be that we need several new signings in January. Its all very well saying we need a midfielder and a foward or whatever – but who do they replace in the team? Thats what I was driving at.

    So, given 4 new faces arrive in the New Year, where should they slot into a 4-4-2 formation?

  30. I’d replace pretty much the entire back four, possibly keeping Wes if his central defensive partner was experienced.

    I would, in the absence of playing Martin, sign a left winger. I don’t think Tyson is particularly effective there the majority of the time.

    Oh, that’s four or five players already isn’t it! Can’t I just sign eleven and be done with it? 🙂

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