Déjà vu..

Déjà vu, a glitch in the matrix, it means they've change something. European Champions into a bag of turd!

Nottingham Forest – 0
Crystal Palace – 1

I really don’t have the motivation to go through this in depth – another game where we had the better of the play, but our final ball and/or shot let us down.  Admittedly there was an improvement on the Brighton game in that the visiting ‘keeper had a few saves to make – one of them excellent.  Then again, Camp wasn’t untested prior to eventually conceding.

So here’s how it all started for us…

Gunter    Morgan    Chambers    Cunningham
McCleary    Moussi     Greening    Anderson

An unchanged line-up from last weekend, which was forced into a crazy level of make-shift-ness when Wes Morgan picked up an injury.  Bizarrely we probably had our best spell with ten men, before Andy Reid was introduced and Moussi moved to cover centreback.

Zaha (who was lucky to be on the pitch for me, after diving, kicking the ball away and a foul all of which warranted a card) turned Cunningham too easily, burst forward whilst our entire defence seemed to back-pedal and not close down, simultaneously ignoring the run from Murray to his right.  Zaha picked out the pass, and t’was a nice finish by Murray to put Palace in front just shy of the hour.

Forest laboured and worked hard but constantly came up short as we’ve seen of late – this worries me on many levels.  Just as the mark of a good team is one that plays badly and gets a result, we are a team that plays well – against, with all due respect to Palace, a not exactly good team yet comes up with nothing at all.  That is not a positive thing, and as a supporter of a team that has been relegated a fair few times, it’s a worryingly familiar trait.

Perhaps the one highlight of the afternoon aside from some promising yet ultimately toothless build-up play was the return of Dexter Blackstock, introduced as a late sub he got a fantastic reception from the City Ground crowd – and perhaps could’ve done better with a headed chance put directly at Speroni.  That and Greening’s inexplicable lunge off the pitch at a Palace player which he was lucky to just get booked for.

It wasn’t a bad performance, but we are in the results business now more than ever – and this is a fourth straight defeat.  Indeed, Steve Cotterill has now managed more defeats than Steve McClaren – and done so in one game fewer.  Not having defensive cover on the bench is something he’s answerable for – that said, Moussi deputised well at the back I thought – it appeared to be a combination of Cunningham initially and then Chambers I’d fault for the goal.

A tricky trip to Bristol, then free-scoring (and hopefully free-conceding) Peterborough at home, followed by Cardiff at home… who can see where the points are going to come from there?  That takes us to January, the month of transfer droughts for Forest traditionally – I think that trend changing rather dramatically is our only hope of salvation this season…

44 Responses

  1. Ironically, Moussi has been a liability in midfield recently but was suitably spooked enough to concentrate, and not try to take people on, when in central defence.

    Greening and Reid continue to improve, and McCleary shows why the other players rate him so highly, possibly our best player on Saturday.

    You have to ask whether JFH (much as I like him) is cutting the mustard as an attacking coach.

    Even now, despite having a poor season, McGugan has almost twice the number of shots on target of our most trigger happy striker (Miller) with the other forwards far far behind. In fact google has hit almost a third of all our on target shots.

    I hope Cotterill will reflect on the last 4 games and realise we cannot set up to avoid losing – we have to go after games and press our advantage. You could see Palace (who were shocking in the first half) finally grow in confidence when they realised we were firing blanks.

    Lots to do.

  2. Very disappointing ! I expected a result here, but later we had
    The Real Madrid , Barca match which was amazing !
    Good players ,good control on the ball and brilliant goals !
    It took my mind off our problems .
    Let’s hope for some positive action in January !!

  3. Another manager who this totally inept management team thought ‘he was always the one we wanted’ again where have we heard that one before

    It shows by the number of posts to this excellent blog how much the paying public have lost interest in the nearly men

    This set of management will put us out of business
    Its not the players as such its the attitude and complete lack of entertainment on and off the pitch that causes a lack otf atmosphere. football is too expensive for the product it delivers, implosion is on the way
    Putting a ball thro’ a hole in a piece of wood as half time entertainment. grow up
    Pissed off, yes i am

  4. Wow, Beeston Red, maybe you should have a bit of a lie down. I can’t see how you’ve arrived at the conclusion that Cotterill is ‘totally inept’ or quite how they’re going to send the club out of business.

    Apart from some notable exceptions (Leeds being the most obvious) I think we’ve been playing well but just no finishing our chances. Apart from about 10 minutes I thought we were by far the better side against Palace. I only listened to the Brighton game on the radio but it sounded the case there too. Of course, being the better side is eventually only decided by who wins, and that’s been down to our finishing. Fortunately the days of just giving goals away seem to have gone (though a lack of clean sheets is also evident), but we’re just not getting anything at the other end. I think having The Moose at the back was pretty much a blessing in disguise, it’s noticeable that neither Big Wes or Chambers can pass a ball for toffee, and we often pay the price for that. Having someone that could pass it out of defence without having to resort to the patented ‘Wes Ball’ (you know that loopy one straight to an opposition defender) meant that we could build attacks instead of just inviting more pressure on ourselves or passing it endlessly around our own back 4.

    I thought G-Mac was very impressive, and caused them all kinds of problems. On another day he would have been on the scoresheet himself. On another day any of 5 players would have been. But of course, the other day doesn’t see to come. Other than the finishing (and some of that’s down to luck) I can’t see much wrong.

    The apparent lack of a contingency plan should a central defender get injured was worrying though. Hard to believe they’d never consider that when picking the bench.

  5. Did not mean Cotterill, its the structure headed by Mark arthur that is out of touch

  6. with respect RedSpicer if you read my rant again you will see i am not having a go at players or Cotterill
    Although, he is what we can get for the money we now have or not got, you have got to admit he is nothing special and most fans were not too impressed with a managers appointment, once again
    Very defensive minded but that was well known, he is geting very twitchy on the bench, even more so his staff but good luck to him but the warning signs are there for all to see
    Crowds are reducing, if it wasn’t for kids for a quid the attandance would have been low on Saturday, football gets what it deserves
    The football club made a huge mistake getting rid of Davies who was a niggly but enthusiastic manager, the players obviousy responded to him apart from moody Mcgugan (where does the boy want to play)
    The upsetting thing is that after £68m Doughty ( most of it wasted money in my opinion) finally admits to a mistake (out of how many) and resigns, throws his teddy out of the pram and leaves us without a pot to piss in
    We all know you made a mistake but learn from it, talk to the fans, sack MA and get back to supporting the club you love but don’t be a loser
    We know its not the money with you so don’t be mardy get back and help get the club in its darkest plight for many years, but please get a new management team(not referring to Cotterill RedSpicer)

  7. Blackstock should’ve been on ten minutes earlier at least. Tudgay was battling manfully but is another striker who struggles in the lone role. Hardly surprising when Raddy rarely got close to him in support.
    As most have said, it was a case of everything but the goal. I felt gutted after losing to such an average Palace side. The players must be on the floor too. The worrying thing is we’ll be playing far better teams than Palace in the weeks to come…

  8. Nice Matrix reference. Who is going to be The One though? Dexter?

    If it wasn’t for Ipswich switching off in the last 10 minutes, that would be 6 defeats in a row, but it still doesn’t feel (yet) like a relegation season. We look much less of a shambles than we did under McClaren – aside from the Leeds match, you at least know roughly what to expect these days: nice football, chances missed, long shots from Lewis and Radi that never go in any more, and then the inevitable defensive screw-up.

    I think there’s still too much defeatism around though. I understand why but it’s not good enough. Some people who think they’re entitled sit and moan for 90 minutes at home matches because they paid their money: they’re just dragging the rest of us down and they all need a good slap. F**k off home if you don’t have the stomach for a fight. (Not referring to anyone on this blog by the way).

    • Valid points Mishi,
      But I guess people are fed up with so
      many terrible results this season. Namely
      the loss at home to 10 man Derby, capitulating to Birmingham with 15 mins.
      left. Then the thrashings against West ham, Portsmouth, Leeds, Burnley. etc.

      Need I remind you this is after Two rock
      solid seasons with a steadfast defense &
      a free flowing style of play.

      • I get the disappointment and the anger. We all know the history of the past few years and we’ve all seen what’s happened this season. But the best way out of this mess is to win some games, and it’s a hell of a lot easier to win games with the crowd on your side. For me it’s that bloody simple.

        Even if you want to see a new owner or a new manager or new players – it’s also much easier to recruit all those things on the back of some success on the pitch.

  9. Fair enough Red Beeston, I failed to appreciate you were referring to those above Cotterill. I feel I might have to pick up on a couple of things though. I think it’s a harsh to say Doughty hasn’t left us with a pot to piss in. He’s honouring the value of the contracts we currently have in place out of his own pocket until 2014. He’s covered our £11m loss from this year and will cover the losses until 2014 as well. That sounds like a sensible and gracious exit considering the abuse he and his family were subjected to. If I’d put that much of my own money into something only to see my family abused and threatened I’m not sure I’d be so understanding.

    You’re right about the impending implosion of football, but this is what the whole fair play thing is meant to resolve. Forest’s wage bill is 109% of revenue. In any business model that’s unsustainable. By the time Doughty has fully disentangled himself from the club (which may never happen if we can change his mind, and I hope we do) then we (along with all other clubs) will be forced to match our spending to our revenue. This will force player wages down, which have been the driving factor in the cost of attending games. Players will have no choice but to take lower wages or they’ll not have work as clubs will not be allowed to overspend. If it all works then this should redress the imbalance we’ve seen in the last 20ish years of football (since the creation of the Premier League). I’m not saying ticket prices will go down, but the driving cost behind them will have dropped, and clubs will be so much more dependant on the revenue from fans (instead of a Sugar Daddy) that they’ll need to price them in a way that maximises attendances and therefore income. This is if it works, of course, but this is something that the clubs themselves seem keen to implement so they’ve obviously seen the writing’s on the wall. I guess only time will tell.

  10. Difficult to find any positives now. The
    City Ground is no longer a fortress, as
    little piss ant clubs like Crystal Palace
    grow in stature as they see the home
    team squander their opportunities.

    Only Forest can go from looking like a
    team going places to a team/club going
    F****** Nowhere in the space of 12

    Forest. I will stick fat but

  11. As I posted on here last week Steve Cotterill is a nice bloke and very passionate about the game but he is no Billy Davies. He doesn’t have that ruthless streak that Davies and other winners have. As to the best manager for the job then I put this question to you all. Who else would have come to the club under the restrictions that Cotterill did? Can’t change the backroom team and can’t bring in new players unless he ships some out. So we can’t question the fact that he was the best that we could get under the circumstances since most of he other candidates wouldn’t have touched the job with a barge pole with such restrictions particularly with not being able to bring in their own backroom staff a usual must for any new manager.

    We are stuck with Cotterill and unless by miracle we get rid of some of the dead wood then we are stuck with this squad for the rest of the season. All I can say is that however well we played at Brighton last week Davies wouldn’t have played the same team against Palace totally different opponents who set up very defensively . It was obvious from early on we needed 2 strikers.

    I’m normally a man who’s glass is half full but I feel this Forest glass is half empty at the moment and getting to the stage where we may need a miracle to turn this season around.

    Chris Philp Sheffield based Red for over 40 years

  12. What a disaster since the summer, Doughty and MA sacked the best manager we have ever had under their tenure. We have spent this seasons budget on players bought in by a manager(who everybody knew would be a disaster) we no longer have, players whom are adding no real benefit if we are honest. They are either injured or no better than what we had, and on probably earning a lot more!.
    The new manager has back room staff which aren’t his choice, what on earth is Hasslebank doing apart from waiting for a pay off-which we cant afford therefore stalemate.
    The new manager states we need a goalscorer (Earnshaw left on a free!)
    Although a couple of years ago Grant Holt left for 250k, he scored 20+ goals in the championship and is now scoring in the premier league!!.
    I like Cotterill he is honest and seems genuine but he wont get us promoted, he will do well to stop us from being relegated.
    Its a sorry mess and despite his millions ND has taken us backwards.
    We spent nearly 1 million on agents last year!! Far more than Norwich or Swansea-disgraceful.
    The mis mangement is amazing, if MA wasnt ND’s mate/puppet in any other club he would have been gone ages ago. In the Forest accounts the highest paid director earns + £200k per year- MA no doubt what a disgrace.
    Frank Clark supports MA, sorry Frank treat us with some respect and by the way do something positive and how about some communication!
    Its no wonder some of the supporters are despondent, this club has been managed appallingly

  13. I’m trying really hard not to panic, but like most Forest Fans I’ve seen this type of season before. I have noted a significant improvement in play since Cotterill has taken charge, but we are missing that spark in midfield and up-front to turn hard work into points. Something has got to give and hopefully the re-introduction of Dexter Blackstock will mean that Forest can play two forwards, as one-up-front doesn’t work well.

    We still have a serious issue with the left-back position as Cunningham is struggling and if you watch the last three games the opposition are targetting him. Most of the goals we concede come from the opposition right wing position – have a look on Forest Player for yourself. Mr Chambers cannot be excluded from blame though, as he is getting pulled out of position far too regularly.

    January is going to be VERY important and here is what I’d do:

    1. Sell Chambers (West Brom or Wigan?) and get Lascelles fit and involved with the first team.
    2. Sell McGoaldrought (or loan him to Nutts Clowty)
    3. Sell Camp (a painful choice)
    4. Listen to offers for Derbyshire / Finley / Tudgay (only one of them)
    5. Allow Cunningham to go back to Man City and put Kieron Freeman at left back
    6. Get Lynch fit and offer him a new deal
    7. Listen to offers for Chris Gunter (over £2m) and put Moloney at right back
    8. Listen to offers for Lewis McGugan (over £1.5m)
    9. Offer Wes Morgan a new deal on reduced terms
    10. Spend some of the money freed up on strengthening defence, wings and central attack.

    I think Cotterill is going to show his worth during a very busy month and his success during this period will either take us down or keep us up!

    • Gavster that is ruthless… I like it. All good points as well, though I’m sure a few fans would be up in arms at some of your suggestions. I would not like to see is Camp leave. This season, like the defence as a whole, he hasn’t been as good as the last 2 years. Also I don’t think we’ll get any money from the sales or wages freed up by that to strengthen the squad.

      Your above points might actually be the only way Forest CAN do things in order to get the wage down below turnover. Sadly I feel this will be the clubs focus for the next 2 years and not promotion.

      • I’ll rewrite this so it makes sense!
        Gavster that is ruthless… I like it. All good points as well, though I’m sure a few fans would be up in arms at some of your suggestions. I wouldn’t like to see is Camp leave though this season, like the defence as a whole, he hasn’t been as good as the last 2 years. Also I don’t think we’ll get any money from the sales or wages freed up by bigger earning players to strengthen the squad.

        Your above points might actually be the only way Forest CAN do things in order to get the wage down below turnover. Sadly I feel this will be the clubs focus for the next 2 years and not promotion.

  14. I feel your pain nffc and totally agree with the blog post apathy rules at the minute they really are a spineless management team in my opinion.

    I posted last week that the MAGNITUDE of NDs decision to sack billy would come back and haunt us and bye jove its hurting now plus e are feeling the full force of the incompetent decision.

    Under billy the players where well drilled had spirit and passion a ruthless edge to see out games.We punched above our weight no doubt and people looked to get on the score sheet.

    It pains me to say it but we are heading for complete disaster if we get relegated we could cease to exist its that serious.Nobody is going to suddenly come and bail out a white elephant like Forest ………

    Where are the goals going to come from im lost ?

    The current coaching team are not good enough MAJOR ISSUE ……..

    I think most players at the club who are decent have one eye on the exit door who can blame eh …….

    Total mess and people are expected to dig deep and pay for this none sense in a major recession ???????

  15. […] the original post on Through the seasons before […]

  16. The situation now calls for Lacelles and Bamford to be given a chance in the squad !What have we to lose???

  17. Steve surely doesn’t want the current coaching staff as surely as Clarke doesn’t want arthur,but the situation is so critical that we are stuck with them. I reckon Mcgugan shouldn’t be sold for less than 3 million ! Let’s see ………………………………………………

  18. Like murphy, it pains me to see Grolt banging them in in the premiership! If I ever meet Smoulders I will ask him if he regrets sticking a talented, hardworking, traditional centre forward out on the wing for a season then selling him on the cheap to Shrewsbury? What a plonker!!!

    I am also less than convinced that Jimmy Floyd is the man to coach our attacking play. The number of times he used to give the ball away during games I saw him play for Chelski was shocking. I hope he is a better coach than he was a team player.

    With Miller out injured and until Dexter is properly fit, I personally would play Lewis up front and tell him to be single minded and go and score some goals. We all know he has the ability and he is a good finisher. With the right motivation and coaching he would make a good striker, you mark my words!

  19. if you can get him of the ‘ sulky mardy’ bus

  20. Jimmy Floyd, our attacking coach….4 games no goals…Yeah Right !!

  21. Ayelsbury red ..well said ! mcgoogle up front with raddi and tuds …yes 3 fronters ….that would at least open up the dire middle of the field ….got to be worth a try …FFS ….need a total different system ..the one we have does not work …are we all seeing the same game cotters ? …we need change of shape …MARTHUR OUT !!

  22. ……26 games without a loss ..wow !!!! under which team manager ????…………….and they sacked him !! wake up people.!! MARTHUR OUT !!!

  23. Latest rumour .Mcgugan for sale for only 1.5 million !
    I hope that’s not true. Sounds like arthur influence.
    At least start at three and wait for offers and you might end up with 2.plus extra for first team appearences and more for a sell on fee !
    I’m sick of us giving away players such as Holt and Harewood,and still it continues…Lets hope that figure is wrong,as I thought we were short of money !

    • Its either that or nothing at the end of the season Alan. Because of the incredibly bad way this club has been managed over the last 3 years (at boardroom level) we are up shit streak. Clubs know that ND is winding down his financial input and know we need to sell in order to get our wages turnover under 100%. We’ll be lucky to get 1.5m.

  24. …the time has arrived yet again ..its up to us ..the followers , supporters of NFFC ..to shout and voice our opinions…for the clubs sake ..what are they doing ? doughnut like him or hate him..hes put money in …in loans ?? or what ?? this is an era where if you have got clout you will get somewhere .if you play financial football monopoly …its the person with the most money wins ..you win ..but you will always be in forever debt…so whos kidding who ? we can build an average team with average goal ..thats it …if you want to be financially stable..if your very lucky ….its impossible to remain in good finances…so doughnut and marthur …..please go ….and cotters ..please try 3 up front 3 middles for diddles and 4 bollocking backs..nothing to lose now …..and nffc …pass it on ..if you can …..im here in italia ….back in new year …meet me for a chat n vino or bierra …Anoi …viva forest !!

  25. One way to save some money is to sack Hasslebank today !! 5 games and no goals must be a justifiable sacking ! Adams also could join him ! His total lack of motivational skills was apparent when he was in charge for our dismal performance away to Coventry !
    I’m sure Harewood is doing as good a job as Hasslebank in motivating our forwards so get rid of Hasslebank now,together ,of course ,with the dreaded Mark Arthur…
    .Now THAT would be a big saving !!
    Pelling can cover for him and we save a fortune !!

  26. NFFC

    R you ok? Or is it you can’t be arsed to write the same owd match reports, ad mauseum????? 🙂 🙂

    Merry Christmas Reg


  27. NFFC

    If u fancy a pint on Boxing Day in the Stratford Haven from 1.45pm?


  28. were all doomed !!!!

  29. Get well soon; we’re all missing you!!!

  30. Get well soon !!
    A Happy Christmas to Everyone and a Good start to the New Year to ALL Forest Fans !!!! Where ever you are!!!!
    From Alan, Margarita Island,
    Venezuela !!!
    p.s Any comments on sacking Hasslebank ??
    I thought we were short of money and needed to free some up !

  31. Man Flu? Any old excuse! Hope you feeling better before P’bro.
    Merry Christmas to you all & let’s hope the new year brings a better turn of luck 🙂

  32. ..Buon Natale a tutti e un felice anno nuovo….!!! VIVA FOREST !!!!

  33. and a merry yuletide !!

  34. Sisco

    Può Auguro a voi e il vostro Buon Natale e un felice anno

    Aventi Viva Forest Aventi

  35. wow !! ravin reg !!! spot on ….what can i say dove stai in italia ? Anoi !!

  36. Sisco

    Im in una città chiamata a Nottingham nel cuore dell’Inghilterra!

    🙂 🙂

  37. ravinreg …va bene !! ha..ha …parla belle italiano !! io da roccascalegna ,Abruzzo !!

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