A series of shock slogans and mindless token tantrums..

A slightly over-dramatic headline, but I couldn’t resist the CRASS reference!  Twitter, the forums etc. have been a fairly angry place for Forest fans of late.  It was predictable really (and indeed, was predicted by me!), and in some ways leaves me questioning my own lack of complete outrage at another transfer window ending without the Reds doing business.

I am disappointed, of course – talk of kicking on, Mark Arthur telling us how much the likes of Whittingham and Pratley wanted to sign, rumours of all manner of things some of which I half fell for, I can see why people are talking of being mis-sold season tickets, why people are angry – why this new blog has publicised a very long letter he sent to Nigel Doughty to question his motives as our owner.

Despite all that I can’t really buy into the rage – and I’m not for a minute criticising those that have, plenty of my regular commenters (who I don’t know, but kind of feel like I do) offered similarly dissenting views on my earlier blog today, and I respect their as well as any other Forest fan’s views if they are well thought out.

I’m also in agreement that the wall of silence from the club is very frustrating for us as supporters, it’s something I dipped my toe in trying to address with a predictable lack of response.  Forest have always been pretty bad at this – indeed, when Mark Arthur did break the board-level silence on transfers he’s ended up with a considerable amount of egg on his face.

I suppose the bottom line is though, we’re Forest fans – we wear the badge, that’s our job.  If people genuinely believe a change is required at the top then the only course of action I can see that you could realistically take is by voting with your feet.  I don’t imagine many would want to do that – but seriously, if you really don’t like it, don’t go.

That’s not meant in a ‘you’re not wanted here’ point of view, just that all the complaining and debating and posting-on-forums in the world isn’t likely to change much.  I have no idea what Nigel Doughty’s agenda is, but I don’t quite see him as the hate figure many seem to, although I wonder how much of that is kneejerkery in the face of immediate disappointment.

If there’s a serious groundswell against the current regime then boycott, organise some action – because my experience of trying to get answers by emailing, blogging, tweeting or foruming is that they will certainly not be forthcoming.  I imagine the next announcements will be a near-infuriating revelation that the loan window will open soon, and that Premier League teams will be confirming their 25 man squads soon.

Which does beg the question, if (and this is NOT a rumour or based on any knowledge) we were to secure a couple of awesome loan signings would that quell a certain amount of the unrest?  I can understand why people feel the way they do, but to me it still rather smacks of over-reaction – for now – but then I am a fairly chilled out kinda guy.

Blimey, two rambling pontifications in one day – I do apologise, but I suppose if the bastards won’t give us any news to talk about we have to make our own!  I’d be interested in your thoughts too via the usual means… is everyone frothing-at-the-mouth angry or are a few more folks disappointing-but-getting-on-with-life?

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34 Responses

  1. Cracking.

    At the end of the day, whilst its disappointing not to secure permanent signings, I’d welcome any loan signing that would improve the team.

  2. I’m glad you don’t do indignation but I think the clubs just worn you down!! And I know the feeling….
    All I ask for his a level of honesty from the club & I think as paying punters it’s the least we deserve. Anyway, Up the Reds!!!!

  3. We’re serious about promotion. Are you?????
    Embarrassing

  4. Agreed that the club could (and should) be more open and more consistently. I’m not sure what a very ill-conceived but very old marketing slogan has to do with this, though!

    I suppose it is a shock slogan!

  5. I share everyones dissapointment at the lack of signings. We simply cannot compete at the top end with such a thread bear squad. We will need to make emergency signings soon. McKennas poor performance at the weekend alone proved that! 

    I must disagree with your call to boycott though. I don’t get to go to games very often, but I adore seeing my club play. No one could stop me going! If people really dislike the powers that be, they should protest Newcastle/man u style.  

    • I wouldn’t actually want people to boycott of course – but if people are serious about wanting a regime change then it’s the only way they’ll get their point across in my view. It would quantify the ‘revolutionaries’ and help the board realise the size of the problem.

      Or alternately it’s actually a relatively small number of people who are very vociferous either online or on phone-ins etc… I have no idea which, I think using the forums etc as a bellweather is problematic at best.

      However, if folks start taking out their frustrations on the team then maybe it would be best all round if they weren’t there… your example of McKenna was a good one, I agree he was poor – but some fans’ reaction to his substitution was absolutely shameful.

  6. I agree – the lack of transfer activity and the ensuing “outrage” were both sadly predictable. Perhaps all it proves is that it is very easy to publicise your thoughts very quickly in the age of social media – in the “old days” we could only write letters or type up articles for the fanzines…

  7. As ever you make some very good points in a well balanced article.  Any reasonable person will understand that ultimately the lack of signings has to be put into context and, in the big scheme of things, this is a reasonably small issue.  Overall, Forest are in a good situation, certainly financially which, given the money dramas in the early nineties, is a nice place to be.  I for one wouldn’t want to be thought of like a Cardiff who have gambled on and indeed are utterly dependant upon promotion for survival. Or for that matter the well documented recent follies of Portsmouth or Notts County and their not so fit and proper owners.  I firmly agree with some commentators who consider it to be just a matter of time before a club is made insolvent; I don’t want that club to be Forest and so welcome financial prudence. 

    Those who criticise Nigel Doughty would also do well to remember the experience of Irving Scholar or be thankful that we have not suffered from the attention of the likes of Peter Risdale.  I have no Doughty is a fan and, whilst I can bemoan the cost of my season ticket given the lack of signings, it pales compared to the millions that he has put into the club in recent years.  He is also an astute and successful businessman who has a better track record of managing organisations than I and thus firmly believe we are better off with him than without him.  As such, I find calls for a protest against the board or a Doughty Out campaign simply a joke but of course everyone has the right to make themselves heard.  If there are to be protests then so be it but I won’t be joining them.  

    However, we don’t choose to be Forest Fans, it kind of chooses us; it’s not logical but simple pure emotion and not something that you can turn off an on at will.  Therefore, I fully understand why fans are unhappy at the lack of success and the prospect that we have in fact weakened the squad compared to last year. This isn’t what we were expecting and isn’t progress but it’s hardly a novelty; let’s face it we’ve been here many times on transfer deadline day.  I do think Billy’s repeated moans to the media, whilst technically correct, have stoked this feeling of discontentment but whether he intended this is open to speculation. It also hasn’t helped that we’ve had a false start to the new campaign after last year and we do seem to be having a bit of a play-off hangover (like Sheffield Utd did last year).  Neither has it helped that we were made one of the bookies favourites for promotion this year; often the kiss of death.  All these events have culminated to raise expectations to the point that anything other than any action to make automatic promotion is deemed unacceptable.  A heady cocktail indeed and why there is such a response from fans after just 4 games. 

    That said, please not I too am very disappointed, and rightly so, at the lack of signings but we do need to keep a level head here.  I am not happy that we are weaker than last season but I don’t think an over-reaction off the field will help matters. I also think certain players are not playing well at the moment, especially McKenna, but booing them every week is hardly likely to inspire them.  We have to be carefully not to make matters worse, which we are in danger of doing, and so I welcome balanced commentary on blogs such as this.  Now is the time to show faith even it is hard……bloody hard!!

  8. I’m not suprised ND wants to rely on the loan market. He’s had his fingers burnt in the past by buying rubbish players but the loan signings have largely worked out and made permenant with Camp, Gunter, Raddy and Blackstock becoming important members of the team. What annoys me is that under the new TAP mindset, ND only buys big when truly desperate ie when we signed Wilson, Davies and Cohen after the playoff debacle against Yeovil and last Summer following our fight against relegation. If only he saw the merit in investment when things are going well…!

    • That is a very interesting point about how we could size up the likes of Ando, Campo, Dexo and Raddo (ahem). These guys have all worked out. Davies, Lennon, Cole, and others didn’t; Georgie Boyd didn’t (rightly or wrongly), but at least we were not stuck with him if Billy wasn’t going to play him.

  9. Dear nffc – as ever, you have presented a well thought out and constructive commentary about our current situation.

    I was going to add to your comments, but agree so completely with “Deeping Red’s” comments that there is very little to add other than ‘continue to believe’ – we have a solid squad of committed players who play as a team and very often play in exactly the manner which we, as Forest fans, expect.

    I for one, will not be writing to the Chairman asking for his head nor demanding a regime change – I will continue to support as I have done for the last 30+ years knowing full well that whilst ‘it could be better’, it has on the majority of occasions, been much, much worse.

    U Reds!

  10. Ok so we haven’t signed anyone and yes we are all gutted but it is far from the end of the world.

    The bottom line is we still have the same squad that finished 3rd last season bar a utility player who wasn’t good enough to make the starting line up and a striker/ winger who the manager rarely played and deems surplus enough to send out on loan.

    Even if 3rd place again this season is currently unrealistic, barring a number of long term injuries, this squad should still be good enough to be in and around the play off positions come January.

    At which point I’m hoping, having learnt from last season, ND will open up his clearly limited coffers and make the signings that will give us the all important lift to kick on at the business end of the season. It might seem a risky strategy but for ND maybe it’s actually the financially savvier way to play it?!

    Maybe the signings drought has left me delusional but I haven’t lost the faith yet!

    U Reds!

    • Agreed but…
      On Saturday they just looked short on ideas. McKenna looked past it (I did give a little “yay” at his substitution, not directed at him but more at the fact Billy took do long to do it)

  11. Whilst there was still a chance, we all agonised, screamed and shouted but the powers that be at the city ground are not omnipotent, and they have not answered our prayers. So, we accept it, farcical as it is, move on, and get behind the lads. And if 3 or 4 premiership hand me downs come our way, so much the better. At least the young hot prospects now have a realistic chance of breaking into the squad!!!

  12. was gutted we didn’t sign anybody yesterday, but hey i’m still a forest and alway’s will be. i’ll be there next saturday showing the team that i love em. i just get the feeling that there’s no buzz at the city ground this year, from the supporters or the players. you never know we might sign some great loan players and walk the league but i don’t think we will if i’m honest 😦 and the people booing mckenna are mugs and nothing more. iv’e never booed a player or the team after a game i hate booing. come on you reds

  13. I think we all knew yet hoped for a signing or two. so no-one is really surprised.
    Marthur is the real idiot after his radio rant and then no new signings.
    Fact is our chairman keeps us going every year, the club spends more that what it generates so i will never have an issue with him.
    I think we will get 2-3 on loan which is all we need to be honest. Remember we have earnie, the moose, raddy, camp, gunter, two decent centre halves and cohen and ando. not a bad team if you ask me. Hopefully we can kick on now and start to get some decent results. Keep the faith fellow tricky tree’s. 🙂

  14. You can’t buy what isn’t for sale.

  15. Deeping Red has said everything I would have — and more — but it’s clear (to me, at least) that Forest have been in freefall since Cloughie’s last season…

    Being relegated in the first year of the Premiership was by all accounts a disaster — the game was flooded with money from 1992 and we missed out, yoyo-ing between two divisions.

    Worse still, the Forest constitution prevented anyone with money taking over the club culminating in the farcical takeover by the Irving Scholar consortium in 1997 and subsequent floatation — £2 million raised, £18 million short of target.

    We were in debt then, Doughty stepped in and more debt followed. But I think he’d be the first to admit he made mistakes and the past decade has been one of sensible financial management.

    I’d love a billionaire to come in and spend millions on Forest but look around at the disasters that are Leeds, Hull, Man City (before Sheikh Mansour), Liverpool, Man Utd, Cardiff, Leicester, Portsmouth, Notts County, etc, etc.

    Dodgy characters such as Ridsdale, Hammam, Mandaric et al epitomise the kind of chairman I don’t want at Forest.

    There’s a recession, football is not a sport to make money out of and it’s cloud cuckoo-land to think there is a fairy godmother waiting in the wings…

    http://patriddell.wordpress.com

  16. Mark Arthur is still a joke though…

  17. PS. Mark Arthur is a joke.

  18. I think frustration sums it up for me more than anything else.We all have different takes on what we see at the CG ground at the moment and opinions on where we are currently at.

    I am a life long red and always will be come what may however I find the current board limpwristed.Billy Davies has his eye on the ball and I am in complete agreement with him when he has his digs at them they lack the killer instinct and it shows in our signings i think trouble lies ahead this season.

    But we must get behind the team and lift them as they have been flagging of late .Its going to be a long season.

    U reds

  19. ,,,,,and we’re gonna go through it all again when the so called elite teams in the prem announce their 25 man squads, leaving the remains to be squabled over on loan deals,,,and guess what we’ll miss out again due to the wage structures we have in place,hope not but can see it being an issue with players coming in and the teams loaning them out wanting as much of the players wages back as possible,,,that aside cut me in half and i’ll bleed garabaldi so lets see what may 2011 brings

  20. Thank god everyone on here still has their heads. ‘Cos if you were reading any of the comments on different notice boards you’d think we were going the way of Portsmouth.

    Its incredibly frustrating that the side hasn’t been built on but I don’t know who some fans think they are spouting off about protesting this and that. More to the point who do they think Nottingham Forest are now? These deluded fans are the ones that give us that arrogant tag that other fans a have noticed. Forest are a Championship club at best right now. It certainly beats the shit out of League one and last season was one of the best for a long time. Its time for a reality check and if we are going to go up it will be the people in charge who decide how we do it, not us. I sometimes think that if it was left to a vote amongst the fans we’d be in the same position as Portsmouth, Cardiff, etc etc because they have the same thirst for immediacy and success without the thought for caution or financial prudence if it goes wrong.

    4 games in and our season is over! When has anybodies season been over in that space of time? (Maybe Torino in the 40’s and Man U in the 50’s but that was an exception) There has been no such disasters for Forest just we haven’t signed Pratley or Whittingham……SHIT! I’ve just realised, our season is over! These two would of carried us to Championship glory and beyond into Europe. Booooooo. Out with the board. Booooooo! Out with Billy! Booooooo! Out with Terry the kit man! Surely some of its his fault as well.

  21. I don’t blame Doughty for not backing Billy Davies in the transfer market, his signings Mckenna, Adebola, Mcgoldrick are not good business. All our better signings are previous loan players that were here before Davies. After paying nearly half a million for Boyd & Billy refusing to play him politically because he wasn’t his first choice target is pathetic. Bring on some decent six month loans & make them permanent in Jan if successful.

    Also people need to get some facts right, Mckenna wasn’t booed on Saturday, he should have come off earlier as he was having a mare (again). So when the substitution was eventually made everybody was “yaying” because of the time taken for Billy to do it!

  22. I think we all need to be more patient, difficult I know, considering the “false start” to the season. I think we have a great team of players and we only fell short last season due to not having adequate replacements for Shorey when he left and McKenna when he got injured.

    The reason we have had an indifferent start this season could well be due to all of the crowds vitriol starting to have an effect on the players. We need to get behind the team & the players and leave the criticism of the Board, the CE, the AP etc to Billy.

    Another thing people fail to appreciate is that the new rule of Premiership teams having to name their 25 man squads the day after the transfer window closes will completely change the dynamics of summer transfer dealings going forward.

    I think we will pick up a couple of decent loan signings after today…probably better than any of the players we could have signed when the window was still open. All the Premier clubs seemed to be playing cat & mouse and haven’t been making a lot of players available.

    Keep the faith and get behind the team!!

  23. This is quite simple. It doesn’t matter what Mark Arthur, Billy Davies, the AP, the players or the Fans say or think.
    The only person that that has any influence at all hardly ever speaks and when he does its difficult to belive what he says. That man, yes you’ve guessed it!! Nigel Doughty.
    Now I’ve always defended Doughty. He came along and rescued the Club then pumped a hell of a lot of his own money into it, however there comes a time when we need to be told the truth about what is happening. After the Play off defaet last season Doughty was interviewed and said that over the summer we would be bringing in ‘at least 2 or 3 players’ to make the next step. Nigel what happened? Was it a lie? If not come out and tell us, if the money isn’t there tell us, if you do not want to spend it tell us. Don’t hide behind the AP (they only act on what you tell them to). I like many others will be there against Millwall and will allways follow the Reds but I just wish the Club (which is Nigel Doughty) had the decency to be honest with us. Above all tell us what is happening and tell us the truth!!!!

  24. Protest against the board being set up outside the city ground, on saturday before the Millwall game, have a look, and join if you want to attend. We have power in numbers, we have a voice so lets use it!!

    • Would need to know a little more about the nature and aims of any protest before commenting further.

      Is it just going to be people shuffling around the carpark with no real sense or why they are there – does the movement have any specific aims for its’ actions?

  25. Seriously, using Crass for a fucking FOOTBALL blog?

    Fuck Forest and FUCK you.

    • How dare I make a cultural reference outside of my subject matter! 😆

      I see you’re a fully bought up believer in anarchy and peace…

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