Reds break Sky and awayday Hoodoo in one unspectacular match..

Plymouth Argyle – 0
Nottingham Forest – 1

A scrappy game in the south-west saw Forest pick up their long awaited first away win of the season.  It wasn’t a spectacular performance by any means, and again Forest wasted much of the chances they created – and also were perhaps fortunate not to have conceded a penalty to the Pilgrims.  Having said that, few Reds would argue we weren’t due some good fortune.

Nearly fifteen-thousand fans almost filled Home Park which is good going for an awkwardly timed Sunday match on TV.  Including a thousand or so from Nottingham.  Although given the ticket giveaway perhaps even more were expected – I suspect they hadn’t thought through just how many supporters wanted to claim a free ticket but didn’t have a corresponding juvenile to take with them!

Forest lined up with a familiar-but-shuffled line-up, still opting to play Garner on the right wing and Cohen withdrawn back to defence, and a welcome return to the side for Raddy Majewski:

Gunter   Morgan   Wilson   Cohen
Garner   McKenna   Majewski   Tyson
Blackstock   Adebola

The immediate start was good for the Reds – immediately getting forward and creatign a chance for Dex from a freekick, unfortunately despite rising well he was only able to direct his header over.  In truth it looked like Larrieu would’ve had it covered regardless.  At the other end Plymouth’s dangerman was Alan Gow, creating a great opportunity for Fletcher who shot wide.

The home side grew in confidence and really should have taken the lead when a pass from Duguid found Mackie unmarked and seven yards from goal – luckily for us he deigned to shoot wide.  Shortly after this he was on target – but despite being wrong-footed slightly Camp managed to block it with his foot; with Gunter completing the clearance.

Majewski was having an influential game in midfield as we’ve become accustomed, beating his defender and coming close with a long range shot which appeared to have the beating of the ‘keeper – but didn’t dip soon enough so ended up on top of the net rather than inside.  Just as I’d given up on the idea of Forest nicking a first half lead, the Reds took the lead.

Gunter played a couple of one-twos – the latter with Dexter Blackstock as he burst into the box – he got a lucky bounce off the head of an Argyle defender but showed good composure to finish inside the far post with his left foot.  His first goal for the Reds, and indeed, his first senior professional goal – so congratulations Chris – may it be the first of many!  Half time arrived soon after, with the Reds in the lead.

Right at the start of the second half the Reds perhaps could have doubled Plymouth’s misery – a cross from McKenna found him in the box which his mis-kicked wide with his right foot where a left-footed effort would’ve made more sense.  Shortly after the ref pulled back play for a foul on Dex where he looked set to square it to Dele who was clear through – predictably, the freekick came to nothing!

The Reds did largely dominate play without creating too many opportunities – whereas Plymouth did have one glaring opportunity where it looked as though Kelvin felled one of their players in the box.  On the TV replay from one angle it didn’t look to have touched the ball at all, from another angle it did look like it – the referee had the former (better) view where it appeared that Wilson had committed the foul.  Luckily for us the referee waved away the protests.

With the consternation rising from the home crowd another chance was created by the home side through Judge, who made a good run with the Reds defence backing off (why do we do that?!), his shot was mercifully straight at Camp who took a couple of attempts to gather.  Wes had work to do as well to stem the tide of the home side, just as five minutes of added time were shown.

The Reds did a good job at winding the clock down and with supporters streaming out of the exits the previously steely resolve of Plymouth appeared to have wilted.  Not a spectacular performance, and elements of fortune – but it’s great to have our first away win monkey off our back, and Joe Garner managed a game without getting booked too – so there’s another bonus!

31 Responses

  1. nffc – has the pleasure of beating Derby slipped your mind already!

    This is our long awaited 1st Away win of the season, we’ve reached double figures for points 6 games earlier than last season and it isn’t even October.

    I still think VC’s ‘bet’ is safe though!

  2. Thank God for the three points. I wish,for my nerves, we had scored at least another one …
    Camp says in an interview that Wes and Chambers had now formed a solid partnership in defence.
    Does anyone know why wilson was preferred to Chambers ????
    I´m sorry but I know we didn´t concede the penalty but I am just not a wilson fan,unless one of you can convince me otherwise.Scunny,as they showed away to Palace are not afraid to attack away from home,and they scored in the 92nd minute at bristol so they don´t give up.
    Should be a good game,but not easy,although we seem to be our worst enemy !
    p.s Well done to the supporters who made the trip !

    • I think – penalty incident aside – Wils has done okay in the last two games he’s played.

      Looks like he picked up a knock in that incident though so the decision could become academic for Billy to go back to Chambers/Morgan.

  3. Why dont we kill teams off?

    Saw the game. The green army were shocking – so we played to their level. Why not finish off? Trying to close games out with a 1 goal lead is always precarious.

    We really need our strikers to get their act together – we have a very poor goal scoring record considering our supposed embarrasment of riches. Adebola looks like he is playing in slow motion, earnie managed to prevent or miss more than he scores. Dex looks promising and McGoldrick hasnt really had enough time to tell. But none of our strikers are in the top FIFTEEN in the leagues high scorer list.

    Billy needs to work out his most promising partnership and give them 3 games in a row to get used to playing together.

    Still, it IS nice to finally get another win to go with the sheep rustling 🙂

  4. Pleased with the 3 points, delighted infact but the fact remains for me personally that again, Davies didn’t play the right team. I’m not going to slag the bloke off as he has turned things around for us…HOWEVER…..

    Why he persists in playing Garner on the right side of midfield instead of young Anderson is beyond me!. Today was the perfect opportunity to score some goals against a struggling side lacking near enough everything. Davies needs to be braver and let the home teams worry about us more, go for it and put pressure on them!

    As i’ve said though, pleased with the 3 points and just hope we can back them up with another 3 against Scunny on Wednesday..

    Rock On!!

  5. Thanks to some internet streaming I was fortunate to see the game. And like all have said, I’m pleased with the 3 points. I was also pleased to see Adebola starting with Blackstock (the two strikers who have shown the most for me so far this season) but with a lack of service, cutting edge, indeed anything of note, the two lads up front didn’t really do a lot. Forest looked better when Majewski got into the game after about 30 mins. He is the BUY of the season, (even though he’s on loan) and his return to the starting line up shows.

    The thing that worried me about today was that against any other team in the league, we would have got hammered. Personally the only positive to take out of the game was the 3 points. Plymouth should have scored early on (how the Plymouth striker missed that sitter from 7 yards only he will know) and the penalty on any other day would have been given. This game was a testament to how bad Plymouth are, not how good forest are.

    Having said all that, so far this season we have played really well against the likes of West Brom, Wednesday, Blackpool and even Blackburn sounded like a decent performance, with very little reward for our positive, open, attacking play. A dire performance that results in 3 points is sufficient. The lads just have to up their game 100% against Scunny otherwise another home defeat looms. I think Forest are a much better team this season and like the commentators said today, it depends how you see it, 5 points off the drop zone or 5 points off the play off places. I don’t fear relegation and if a team can play bad and still win, when they play well (which on the whole Forest have done so far this season), good results should flow regularly.

    I agree with Yoouuu Reeeddsss on Garner. I like the kid and think he would do much better up front, but Ando has shown enough to warrant a starting place on the right. When he came on, he made a few good runs with the ball, one at the end when he carried the ball nearly the length of the pitch just to take the pressure of the defence. He’s fast and can go around defenders. For all the skills Garner has, pace and trickery aren’t really among them. Happy with the points, now lets just see what happens on Wednesday.

    • I read it 🙂 I agree with most of it, too.

      I too like Adebola and Blackstock – but not together.

      Garner on the right continues to confuse – although I thought he had a good game there aside from not hitting the target with the chance that came his way.

      Would have preferred to see Garner up front with Dele or Dex and Ando on the wing.

  6. Sorry for the massive post. Nobody’s going read all that now are they! U reeeds!

    • Pachuga Red I live abroad and wanted to know which internet streaming you used for the Forest match. I was watching for ten minutes and got cut off with a demand to subscibe. Thanks. Alan

  7. Billy’s way is to pick different teams for different opposition. That is his way of doing things, all the strikers knew that would be the case when they signed. Most teams rotate these days due to the number of games and improvement in tactical thinking etc. The days of seeing the season through with the same 12 – 13 players are long gone.

    We won – 3 points, lets move on.

    • This is the bottom line.

      As I noted in the match preview – number-of-players-used stats would suggest we rotate our squad LESS than our fellow Championship peers.

  8. Earnie – injured?
    Win – OKz, would have prefered 2-0 or 3-1 (to be above our wolly neighbours)
    Camp or Smith? Neither much better than the other.
    Unbeaten – Away yes, home??
    CG pitch – cause of pathetic home form or is it the crowd?
    You reds!!!
    Oh & Pachuca Red – I did 😉

    • I see little advantage between our two ‘keepers either – the defence seem slightly happier with Camp for whatever reason though.

      No idea where Earnie was!

      I’m not sure the pitch OR the crowd are the problem at home. Excepting the Watford game Forest have played very well at home – the pitch would presumably stop this, the crowd have generally appreciated the endeavour – the problem has been a combination of bad luck and poor finishing.

  9. First half was a bit disjointed and we didnt really keep the ball too well. Second half was much better and we looked by far a better team.

    Majewski seemed to have a much better 2nd half too – seems to me he plays better when hes given freedom to roam.

    Overall I was satisfied. We were the away team remember so you cant expect to boss the game throughout.

    Bring on Scunny!

  10. Garner is in the side because Billy likes nasty, combatative players, and he does have an eye for a pass I think. He is in midfield rather than upfront because he isn’t quick enough to play as the “quick” striker and he isn’t big enough to play as the “big” striker, not compared to his rivals for the position.

    I too would rather have Anderson on the pitch with Garner up front when we plays, but the selection isn’t “confusing”, it makes perfect sense when you consider the manager.

    I think this time round 3 points was more important than the performance, in which case I have nothing to criticise. Well done Forest.

  11. First of all, I am delighted because we broke the SKY jinx in front of my eyes. Many thanks to the Australian site for transmitting the game live via internet, so for once I can share my thoughts with you all.

    It is right that despite their poor form, Plymouth should have scored twice in the first half, and our defence seemed at a loss in both cases (especially with Mackie dribbling all of them before Camp saved with his right boot). But in the second half they were almost nonexistent, we created openings easily and should have killed it off. I have to disagree with you all as far as the penalty is concerned – I saw it many times and think that it was rather the Argyle player “demanding” it than Kelv actually fouling him.

    Overall, the importance of a clean sheet is capital in this League and this was just our second in nine games. We have to do more. Concentration is the key, we have one more option in defence with Wilson back (and later with Bennett hitting the ground and allowing Cohen to play in position again), we will probably get a centre-back on loan, so we ought to do better – and we must.

    I was also surprised to see Blackstock and Adebola together, they both are the type of the “big and strong” centre-forward and could operate better if flanked by Earnie or Garner (or McGoldrick too, I’m sure he will get his chances). Joe is giving his all and no blame on him whatsoever (especially when he doesn’t pick up stupid bookings!), but when Anderson came in in his place we saw what a winger is all about. Well done Ando, I hope he is restored to the first team and Joe is given a shot in his natural position.

    And a final word about Majewski. His skills are a big asset for this league, he can create, he can score, he can pass. But in my book he was a little selfish yesterday. Having played football I know how it is to be sitting out injured, especially for a guy with Rado’s character (see Ned Kelly’s comments in Maybe he was too eager to score and this brought some criticism from his teammates in the game (I think it was Dex that at some time had enough of it and gave him a piece of his mind). Rado, you have nothing to prove; by now we all know who you are, and we will appreciate it if you play for the team – because you can.

    Lengthy post huh? Sorry but seeing a Forest game live doesn’t happen to me that often! 😉

  12. nffc, who is the guy in the picture anyway? 🙂

    • Ah yeah, you foreign types won’t have seen the advert!

      It’s a character from a current Aviva advert (played by Paul Whitehouse – a UK comedian), he’s a Plymouth fan driving up to Newcastle.

    • That Guy is Paul Whitehouse – he did an advert recently, I think as a fan of Plymout….

  13. a bit off topic, but now we have broken our sky jinx, perhaps we should organise the lower tier of the BC stand to do something like this…..

    haven’t worked out whether its a hoax or not, but if it isn’t, its bloody brilliant!

    • maybe if it’s too hard to imitate the Koreans, I would recommend what fans of my Greek team Olympiacos did in the recent game v Alkmaar (Champions League) when teams came onto the pitch. have a look!

  14. To all the people slagging off Garner,I think they need to look at what he actually provides:

    1. Wins an incredible amount of freekicks: takes pressure off the team.
    2. When the ball is crossed in from the left, we have another striker coming in from the wing. He has been close to scoring in a number of games.
    3. Works hard, and is an aggressive tackler.
    4. Billy says he is disciplined defensively.

    So the guy is in there in merit, as Billy would not allow anything otherwise.

    • N. Ireland Red, I’m not sure anyone is slagging off Garner, he has played surprisingly well at right mid, seeing that McGoldrick would be the more obvious striker come right wing. It just seems that Anderson looks more suited to the right wing and has shown things that Garner hasn’t. Garner has played well and I agree with the things you say, I just think Ando has been much better out wide. I think Garner would be much better up front as his skills suggest.

      One criticism of playing strikers as wingers was obvious in the plymouth game and I think this is where Forest benefit by playing Anderson as opposed to Garner is that Forest looked extremely narrow in the game and on more than one occasion you could almost describe it as “bunching”. Forest are much better when they play more open and having two strikers as wingers who tend to wander into the middle is counter productive. Ando stays wide and creates the necessary space for a pass to open up the play and take pressure of the defence, something he did a few times in the Plymouth game. For me, though Garner is tough tackling (a liability it may be as he gets booked far too much), work horse of the ilk of Rooney, I would rather him play up front with one of the big boys and have a more natural winger on the pitch whose benefits, IMO, outweigh the benefits of Garner being right wing. That’s all.

  15. Vassilis, nice idea! What would that be in Greek?

    • Haha… as you see the whole thing is in English! “Attack now and make your own luck”. This was because our club has a tradition of offensive playing and our last manager (who was sacked before the particular game) had turned the team into a defensive machine without too much creativity up front). In Greek? Can you read Greek???!!!! “Επιτεθείτε τώρα και φτιάξτε μόνοι σας την τύχη σας”.

  16. I spent all today in the city hospital, while there i heard agent clough on radio sheep this afternoon saying how many chances they had been creating & it’s only a matter of time before they give someone a good hiding, then saw the result of tonights match. Not yet nigel my boy.

  17. Thanks Vasssilis,I like that, and thanks for the info re the streming.If you find anything like that again let us guys living abroad know if possible…Thanks

  18. […] defeat to Blackpool at home.  I think the key moment this month was a scrappy goal by Chris Gunter giving us a victory against Plymouth, from which we’ve really started to push on […]

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