Middlesbrough vs. Forest preview..

An improved performance against Watford on Saturday (I said improved, not amazing, world-beating or anything like that!) might well serve to give the Forest squad the confidence to go one better at Boro.  Well, it might.  Whilst of course we are near the bottom of the form bragging order, Middlesbrough have stalled in what had looked to be a promotion bid – they have yet to notch a league win in 2012, something even we’ve managed – just!

With the news from the Black Country of Mick McCarthy being relieved of his duties at Wolves, it’s to be hoped that this doesn’t result in a recall for either Elokobi or Guedioura – with the latter putting in an eye-catching performance at the weekend, and the former being our only left-back cover what with us extending Freeman’s loan to Notts County and with Cunningham still being out injured.

The only change in available personnel for us is the availability of Marcus Tudgay who missed the Watford game through illness.  Given Steve Cotterill’s favour of the striker, and the not-exactly-impressive showings from either Harewood or Miller then he might well find himself back in the side.  Personally I’d like to see him revert Gunter to right-back, and pop Wootton in the middle at the expense of Chambers – can’t see it, though.

Boro haven’t won in their last six league games – three defeats, and three draws.  Not a daunting record, although more so when you consider ours – having said that, we have won one of our last six, we’ve drawn one too – of course – and lost the rest.  So in terms of ‘who has lost most’ then we are worst off, although have amassed a whole one more point over that period in the league.

They are missing Danny Coyne with a calf problem, and Zemmama and McDonald who are also both out suffering injuries.  We’ve picked up no additional injuries, so it’s just Moloney and Cunningham who are likely to remain on the sidelines alongside long term victim Chris Cohen.  Suddenly we seem to have quite a few selection options, I wonder how long it will be before the manager complains about too much choice in his post-match interviews?

If I were inclined to have a bet then a low-or-no-scoring draw seems likely.  I would dearly like to think that we can kick on and continue to improve our performance levels after the weekend, but I’ve been bitten by optimism before so am a little more cautious now.  I’m not even cautiously optimistic and that’s something that makes me feel really rather sad – because I can usually muster a bit of cautious optimism at least.

Elsewhere in the football news Portsmouth are being handed parachute payments early to help ease their financial burden that is likely to see a point reduction should they enter administration again.  After some initial confusion over the likely punishment in such an event it’s a ten point deduction that would be handed out.  That would put them on level points with us, but (obviously) a better goal difference.

Ordinarily I’d be sorry to see it come to this – but when you patently fail to manage your circumstances despite being handed millions a year to ‘compensate’ for a lack of top flight action then something needs to happen.  If anything there is too much leniency being shown.  And that’s not just me being bitter because not only did they land us with Steve Cotterill, they made us bloody well pay for the privilege!

Anyway, I digress – a tuesday night trip to the Riverside Stadium isn’t what anyone wants, and both sides stand in need of a change in form for different reasons.  It’s difficult to formulate a cogent argument for it being us that does so, maybe Middlesbrough fans feel similarly pessimistic – either way, I’m sad to say that I fear a draw would be seen as a success here.  Then it’s on to Coventry at home which, basically, if we can’t win then we are down.

17 Responses

  1. I think a change of manager at Wolves might be good for Forest as most new gaffers have a mini clear out so maybe they’ll put in a shift with us to get a better profile in the shop window.

  2. Or the prospective new Wolves manager may have seen reports of Guedioura’s performances and witnessed the 5-1 mauling WBA handed out to an uninspired Wolves side and think he may be the man to chnge their fortunes.
    I am hoping we can catch Boro cold tomorrow. Agree one of Miller or Harewood needs to be benched. Both were underwhelming on Saturday. Tudgay is more switched on than either and would link better with midfield.
    I hope for a 0-1 to Forest!!

  3. Oh how times have changed.
    We look upon a home draw as a
    really positive result!
    Our last 2 goals scored ( let me think )
    have been speculative pings from long
    range from McGugan & McLeary.

    Gotta start taking our chances!
    As we have been there for the taking,
    Boro’ are there for the taking.
    Wouldn’t it be great to snag 3 points at
    the riverside & head into Saturday full
    of Confidence V Coventry!
    Might even be out of the drop zone come
    Saturday evening!
    Or is my imagination running wild?

  4. Lets hope Miller has an absolute blinder, scores a hat trick and reminds Mowbray what a player he can be on his day. They then take him and his reputed 17k a week off our hands!

  5. Aylesbury Red,you said what I was going to say re. Miller ! It looks like a 10 point deduction is coming for Pompey so they will be in the mix too !
    Coventry is certainly a must
    win game.

  6. We’ve got to get something out of this game tonight… how long can we wait for the results to come because the games are soon going to run out!

    I hope Wolves sacking McCarthy doesn’t result in us losing Guedioura or Elokobi because whilst ever they are both at Forest, just like our other loanees, it means that more of group that has been underperforming and not taking responsibility for this mess misses out. Given most probably never thought they’d be dropped or lose their places its refreshing to have new players to get behind – new players who are hoping shifting the mentality and attitude of the dressing room.

    As for Portsmouth it just seems like they are just postponing the inevitable. The crazy thing is that even a 10 point deduction doesn’t nail them to the wall since if we’re thinking we can survive then they certainly would given their results have been slighty improved since Cotterill left them.

    Nffcblog – if Gunter is moved back to rightback, Wooton in the centre for Chambers, then who are you putting on the right wing? McCleary and then Reid can start on the left? SC wouldn’t do that having listened to his post-match interview where he basically said that the reason why Reid comes on as a sub is that by that time most teams are running on empty i.e. Reid isn’t fit enough nor quick enough to start against players full of energy!

  7. I think it’s depressing that Pompey can afford to be docked 10 points and STILL be above us. That could be us, come Thursday…

  8. I think that Guedioura couldn’t be recalled, since he’s in temporary transfer, not in emergency loan. But I’m Italian, and possibly don’t know enough about Championship transfers rules.

  9. I read piece in a news paper today about Nigel Dougherty…………………….Coun Selby recalled how Mr Doughty’s love of Nottingham Forest was made obvious to any visitors to his Skillington home.

    He explained: “As well as being a kind and generous man who was very supportive of local good causes, he was passionate about Nottingham Forest FC.

    “In Nigel’s garden is a hedge of the Forest logo and with Nigel’s sense of humour this meant that his superb gardener, who is a Derby County fan, had to trim the hedge.”

  10. I think all of you are in danger of having hope and as Woody Allen says it’s the hope that kills you!

    Me, frankly my dear I don’t give a damn……we were relegated the moment we appointed Mester Cock-up as manager!

    Watch us win tonight 🙂 :)!

    • Now then Reg I don’t believe that you don’t give a damm, you’d just like to think you don’t as an understandable pain avoidance measure. If you didn’t care you wouldn’t read match previews on here let alone take the time to comment on them !

      PS – Nice quote and I’ll see you in the Stratford before the game on Saturday!

      • Actually at 53 mins in it turns out you were right. Clueless is in rampant ineptitude mode so fcuk it, let’s just get pissed on Saturday instead 😦

  11. We will huff and puff again tonight but I still cant see where the wins are going to come from to turn round this total fiasco of a season round .

    We might scrape a draw but its not enough is it ? I still believe we will go down with games to spare and It pains me to say it .

  12. cotters is not the man ….when will they listen ???? like always …MARTHUR AND ALL THE DRIBBLE OUT …VIVA FOREST !!

  13. What get me is we appoint a manager who has done fuck all as a manager with the exception of his time over the water. We rush into the decision. We pay compensation when he’s about to get sacked? Instead of saying when we did appoint him its your job till the end of the season or giving him a rolling 12 month contract we give him a feekin 3.5 year contract? You couldn’t make it up could you?

    Mester Cock-up has to go I’m sorry he has to go! Looking on the bright side we may not have a club after the will is made public tomorrow. That will save us all the heartache.

    Deeping getting pissed sounds better than watching them. But your wrong I don’t care anymore.

    Depressed Reg..

  14. What a cowboy? No Reid or ,our only consistent defender this season, Lynch from the start…. It’s like Kinnear & Megson all over again…

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