Is that it for automatic?

Big Dele: Wasteful with our best chances

Barnsley – 2
Nottingham Forest – 1

I have a proper sulk on me still, I was wanting to calm down a bit before writing this but still find myself a bit downhearted.  Whilst bigger deficits have been overturned in nine games, I am starting to think the gap to second is looking a bit too big now.  I also can’t see us turning around our away form at Newcastle, realistically – can we?  A frustrating evening in Barnsley, thanks in no small part to Kevin Friend – the referee from Leicester.  What an incompetent idiot that man is.

Billy promised changes, and duly delivered them – going for a four-four-two line-up which certainly appeared to address the key issues we had.  Cohen was in midfield, and James ‘injured for the season’ Perch played at left back apparently with the help of some injections, so hardly a long-term solution to the left back problem (although I thought he had a decent game there).

Gunter    Morgan    Wilson    Perch
Cohen    Moussi    Majewski    Boyd
Adebola    Earnshaw

Oakwell was eerily quiet and pretty much half empty too, and it was the Forest fans charged with making the atmosphere interesting.  The first half started in fairly scrappy fashion as we’ve become accustomed – whilst the Reds (when I say Reds, I mean us) started to dominate play, chances were at a premium – Cohen’s shot from twenty yards was the closest we came and that went wide.

Then came the suckerpunch, in Barnsley’s first attacking move of the game a freekick was lumped forward where it was met by Daniel Bogdanovic’s head and looped up and over Camp into the top corner.  If he meant that as an attempt on goal then hat’s off to him, but I fear it was one of those bloody unlucky situations!  This got the home side going, and Hammill had a shot that Camp needed to be nimble to keep out with a diving save.

Forest weren’t out of it though, Raddy played a great chipped throughball to Dele who was one on one, he beat the ‘keeper, but put his shot wide.  With all respect to big Del, he’s probably the last of our strikers you want with a chance like that – especially with Earnie on the pitch.  Moments later he had a similar situation – getting past the defender and getting one-on-one with Luke Steele – this time he lifted the ball over the advancing ‘keeper but once again missed the target.  Poor.

Earnie was looking desperate to be involved but when he did get the ball, after good work from Moussi, he was quickly crowded out by the hardworking home defence.  As the half drew to a close it was the home side that had a spell of pressure, although it never really came in the form of a decent chance.  As for the referee – he denied Forest three of the most obvious corners you’ll ever see and gave goalkicks instead.

So, half time, a chance to regroup.  The second half started with more Barnsley pressure – Foster was blocked by Wes, the ball falling to Bogdanovic who should’ve worked Camp at least, instead hitting the side netting.  Forest soon regained the initiative though, a freekick from Cohen found Majewski whose shot was desperately close and might even have struck the post.

Gunter had an effort too that Steele flapped at, the result of this fell to Cohen with the keeper out of position, but it wasn’t exactly an easy chance and he missed the target quite horribly.  Once again there was a sucker-punch,  Teixeira got past Earnie (of all people!) who clipped him, illiciting a theatrical Platoon-style dive – but I suppose it was a foul.  Much like what happened to Dex at the weekend in Preston, of course then Dex was booked for diving, this time Earnie was booked for the foul and we conceded a penalty.

Bogdanovic stepped up and calmly sent Camp the wrong way to put his side two goals up.  At this point Billy withdrew George Boyd, who hadn’t really got involved in the game so far, and replaced him with Nathan Tyson.  Who initially also struggled to get involved in the game – although Tys does have a better chance profiting from the increasingly aerial route we were taking as desperation was clearly setting in.

Big Dele was the next man to go off, being replaced by Dexter which seemed like a sensible move to me too.  Another chance for Majewski saw Steele make another unconvincing save, and again the rebound fell for Cohen, whose reply was straight at the ‘keeper.  Then finally came the goal, Raddy crossed, Dex headed – Steele saved but Dex was on hand to tap the rebound in and get the ball back to the centre spot sharpish.

Forest piled on the pressure and introduced Anderson to replace Moussi, but struggle to make too many chances – after Steele again had dropped the ball Earnie stroked the ball into the net only to find that Kevin ‘no’ Friend of Forest adjudged the goalkeeper to have been impeded.  He wasn’t, it was yet another suspiciously against Forest decision from the referee.  Shall I remind you where he’s from, again?  Maybe not.  He did, at one point, book a Barnsley player for falling over one of his teammates too, so perhaps he’s just shit rather than biased.

A very frustrating evening.  We weren’t good, by any stretch, but neither were they – on performance we were good value for a draw, but for wasteful finishing and – for my money – a poor refereeing decision we could have had at least that.  But it’s a defeat, a defeat I fear puts a realistic end to our hopes of nicking automatic promotion.  However, to still be in the mix with ten games remaining far exceeds anything I expected preseason, so we should remember that.

With eight straight away defeats a distinct possibility after our trip to Newcastle, it rather puts pressure on our excellent home form – starting with struggling Peterborough this coming Saturday.  And pressure doesn’t seem to be something this young Forest squad are coping particularly well with at moment.  I really hope that we have some favourable news on the acquisitions front this week, as our squad could do with freshening up.

13 Responses

  1. I hate to say it ,but if we can´t beat barnsley away,I think we should stay in this league for another season to strengthen our squad to prepare for the premiership.

  2. Our failure is down to one man and one man only. The ever silent and ever incompetent Marthur. What a waste of sp[ace, possibly even a closet sheep!!!!!
    Billy should have been backed in January, it is a criminal failure by the cheif exec.
    The manager, players, supporters and chairman cannot be faulted, we ahve all been shafted by Marthurs inability to do his job properly, mid march and still no recognised left back APPALLING.
    He should grow a pair and resign, we will not advance with this pillock runnung our club.

  3. 15 points to be had at home still, and we probably need 10 for the playoffs. This will still be a massive achievement for the whole club, including the board, regardless of what else they may have thrown away by a lack of January transfers.

    It’s winning the lottery jackpot then finding out 30 other people have as well, you’re disappointed you’re getting £230,000 instead of £7 million, but you’re still getting £230,000!!!

    Billy is our King, regardless.

  4. despite the result i really enjoyed the game as it’s the first game i have been to for a while- i thought our fans were excellent and really backed the team. Although of course there were a few (understandable) moans and groans at wayward passes etc, anything half decent was warmly applauded. I thought we looked good when the ball was on the ground but all too often it just seemed to get lumped up the middle towards Dele. A play off position would be great considering where we have been over the last few years.

  5. Well written nffc i think we all share your pain its hard to swallow after the progress we have made.You have to give billy credit he has been telling the fans for months the team isnt ready or has the bottle at mo.

    3 good players would have made a solid impact but we are toiling no doubt about that.You mentioned in report that the side struggles with pressure or bottle,i cant agree more until we have more players with mckennas focus or experience this wont change.

    Even if we make the playoffs I still think it could be tears again, as i still think we have a lot of leage 1 players that have overachieved and too young.

    But I will back the boys like all of us to the end and hope for the the best outcome.

    U reds

  6. 4 points to make:

    At the start of the season where did you think we’d be? We should be overjoyed at what’s been achieved this season even if we don’t make the play-offs!

    If you look at the team over the last few weeks it been essentially the same side as last season.Remind me where did we finish then?

    The season isn’t over remember 2007-08?Finally are we really ready as a club for the PL? Not just the players but the whole club! Billy’s been saying this all the time…..perhaps he was right!

    If we have to go through the play-offs so be it. It will give the players some valuable experience. Now what about some new players? Michael Ball anyone? The fb not the silly tart of a singer!

    Chins up SNAFU ( Situation Normal All Fucked UP!) Back in the saddle on Saturday.

  7. Is that it for automatic? Yes very probably. But you never know with 2 wins in the next 2 games at home we might stand half a chance, although the home winning streak has to end sometime I guess.

    It’s disappointing that we have fallen away because when we played WBA we looked much the better team, but credit to them for keeping up their winning form when ours has vanished. What a blow it has been to lose McKenna.

  8. I urge all you fellow reds to get looking round for a left back over the coming weeks and drop a few e-mails to the official Forest web site. If they can’t do the legwork themselves when it comes to back up targets then it looks like we need to do it for them (plus it puts across the point we’ve all been trying to make to them).

  9. In response to your comment reg if im honest i expected the team to be in and around the playoffs with the quality added.SO DID DAVIS DONT BE FOOLED

    Having camp,shorey,gunter,mckenna,blackstock ,anderson,raddy playing regulary with a strong spine elevated this side up too january.Howz that last seasons side ?

    We were only a few games from relegation last season and there are quite a few players in our side who are struggling at this level now.Our form has been woeful and everyone knows the side going into the playoffs with the best form gets promoted.

    A mate of mine met billys son in glasgow last year on the football scene and told me that forest were going for it big time promotion wise.All the media chat is smoke and mirrors they havent backed billy point.

  10. Form swings. So still to be ‘in the mix’ after the run we’ve had lately is testament to how well we’ve done.
    Maybe now automatic promotion looks unlikely the players will relax and settle for play-offs, get the passing game going again and start to believe in themselves again.
    Form might just swing back our way ready for the last 3 games of our season…!

    Maybe we are all a little peeved because of the great position we had gotten into, therefore we feel its our ‘right’ to be challenging.
    Whereas had we snuck in to 6th on the back of an average season with a late run we’d have been overjoyed??

    One thing for sure, whoever goes up WILL struggle.
    But I’d quite like the opportunity to try, rather than settle for a “ah, we weren’t ready anyway” and another season of battling away having lost Cohen, Earnie and the like…

    Come on lads, lets enjoy our football, make lots of noise and push the mighty reds across the finishing line!

  11. The season will always even itself out. I think our away form, when you look at it now evened out over the season, is about right. Its just the unbeaten run that skewed it. This is just luck working its mysterious way. For a team to finish in the top 2 you need to be good and lucky all season. Well we’ve been good some games and lucky in others but not often together. All in all though we’ve probably been more lucky away from home than good. But our position in the league is a fair one and its a very good one. For what its worth I don’t think we’ll go up, I don’t even think we’ll get to Wembley ‘cos there is a question of bottle in pressure situations. However, I will of coarse be hoping for victory but I won’t be too despondent if we don’t make it. What I will be upset about is if we don’t build a promotion winning team for the following season.

  12. My concern is again Marthur and what he presided over last time we had a whiff in the playoffs agianst Sheffield U. The same will happen to us if we dont succeed – the team will be broken up as the vulutres come circling for Raddy , Cohen and Dex (and campy?) . They didnt back Harty and they wont back Billy – Marhur out – Glasers in !

  13. I agree that we are not ready for the PL. Another season in the Champioship, gaining experience will hold us in good stead for the 2011/2012 season. Need to get rid of Arthur….forget the Glasers… what about the “Red Knights” – they won’t even have to change their name!

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