And so, is it farewell for Paul Smith?

Is this the end for the maligned Smith?

It seems to be on pretty good authority that Forest will complete the loan signing of Everton’s Iain Turner, somebody I hadn’t heard of until rumours started circulating.  Reluctantly I think the ballad of Paul Smith has reached an inevitable and self-fulfilling end.  A promising keeper who I still maintain was improving weaknesses in his game was undermined by unnecessary criticism from the stands.  Admittedly, other players have endured such criticism and shone through regardless – but clearly that confidence level thing is something that did wear away.  Coupled with the Keystone Cops in defence, it was only a matter of time before it all came crashing down.

So, we get to see if Turner can tap into the magical ‘Lee Camp Syndrome’ with some of the intelligentsia in our fanbase, or whether a couple of mistakes or hesitations will be so mercilessly leapt upon so as to hardly give the lad a chance.  His most notable past action is whilst on loan with Brian Laws’ Sheffield Wednesday, where an eleven game stint saw the Owls unbeaten.  He returned to Everton where he’s signed up ’til 2011 – but an injury curtailed any claims he might make on the first team, so he’s not exactly match sharp!

Either welcome on board, Iain – or massive apologies for prematurely posting something that turned out to be a pile of rubbish!  Bear in mind that we can only have five loan signings in a match day squad, so one of Anderson, McSheffrey, Osbourne, Lynch or Gunter will have to miss out should this turn out to be true and Turner is in goal against Wolves at the weekend.  Another would have to miss out if the rumoured courting of Marlon Harewood ever comes to fruition.  And that still leaves us with the same inadequate defence we had had in the first place.  Ho hum.

As I’m sure regular readers will realise – whilst I acknowledge that Paul Smith does have his faults, his treatment by some of our supporters – and some of his teammates – has been shameful in my opinion, and personally I would – if this is to be the beginning of the end of his Forest career – thank him for his efforts which I believe have been significant, certainly in contributing to our promotion last season, but also in some of the points we’ve managed to grab this season too.  I don’t buy into the scapegoating, but if Turner works out better for us, then so be it, because for whatever reason it doesn’t seem to be working out for Smithy at the moment.  Cheers Smudge.