Often Partisan

Forest Reflections

Blues could only away with a point from the City Ground in what was a scrappy game. Jon Toral headed the visitors in front only for Matt Mills to equalise shortly after, heading home David Vaughan’s free kick.

First of all, I have to get it off my chest – the referee Mark Brown was atrocious. Inconsistent, picky and by the end completely out of control of what was a niggly game. I can’t agree with Gary Rowett – I thought based on what I saw Nelson Oliveira deserved not one but two red cards; you cannot lead with the elbow like he did. I didn’t see enough of Vaughan’s challenge to say it was a red but he was high and Donaldson was down for a while which probably swung it.

He wasn’t helped by Blues Man of the Match Jacques Maghoma and Paul Caddis winding up the Forest players. The Congolese international has become an important player even before the departure of Gray and I think he’s really come on leaps and bounds. He was direct, strong and it was that strength that allowed him to bounce through challenges and get the Forest players niggling at him.

Caddis was combative too, and came in for some stick from the crowd after going down from one particularly robust challenge. When the home crowd in the Main Stand chanted he was a cheat as Caddis went to retrieve the ball for a throw in, the Scot pointed at his chest as if to say “you mean me?” before dismissing the crowd with a nonchalant wave.

Caddis was the provider for Blues goal. Defensively he wasn’t great, but his cross for Toral was an absolute peach, inviting the Arsenal loanee to dive and thump his header past Dorus de Vries in the Forest goal. He got forward well and tried to float more balls in but none of them had the accuracy of that one cross – although I’m not going to knock him for forcing the Forest defence to defend.

Michael Morrison had a poor game by comparison. His distrubution was poor and his decision making was nowhere near what I’d expect from him; often he put Blues under excessive pressure by passing the ball to a Forest player or by allowing the ball to bounce giving time for a Forest player to press him and challenge for it in our own third.

While Blues played well I think it should be stressed that was basically our last 18 fit senior players (if you go with the assumption Wes Thomas and Mitch Hancox are finished at Blues). Had we suffered an injury tonight – particularly to a winger or a centre-back – we’d have real issues. Hopefully Rowett will have again had it impressed on him he needs a bit more depth for his squad – and that with the right addition Blues will be a match for anyone in this division. Derby will be a tough game and I hope we won’t be going into injury time looking for another two-goal rescue act.

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128 Responses to “Forest Reflections”

  • Matt says:

    2 red cards fo Oliveria…. When is it a red card when your player goes through the back of ours?? Vaughs red card by your cheating 6ft 3 cheating 9 diving all over the place and puts his face down to three feet of the ground….. Your keeper hand balling it out side the area on a clear goal scoring chance and three defenders going through Mendex before he it given a yellow card…… I agree and so do most of the 140000 Forest fans and the media that the ref was shit but it was just in our favour
    …… He should never ref again

    • almajir says:

      If you’re referring to Toral he got the ball didn’t he? Didn’t think that was even a foul…

    • ChrisG says:

      140000 forest fans? You’ll be lucky

    • Bluenosesol says:

      Forest should have had 3 players sent off. Off the ball kicking incident, Olivieras two sending off offences and as a qualified referee, I can tell you, there doesn’t have to be any intent to award against a player whose actions are considered dangerous. If striking the opposing player in the face with your studs isn’t dangerous then short of taking a gun on the pitch, I don’t know what is!

    • RichardM says:

      Heh Matt, don’t forget our “cheating” right back either!

  • BhamCityJulian says:

    I wasn’t at either ours or at B6 but my hunches are that we’ll fall short of the playoffs and won’t be playing our neighbours next season. The league table doesn’t look too unkind to them now so it Sunderland, Swansea (who are still in denial) and Bournemouth or Norwich.

    Here’s to hoping on wrong on both counts

    • swissjonny says:

      Yes Julian I fear you may be right on both counts.The Vile suddenly dont look in such a dismal situation and as I fear we will not be reenforcing our squad to any great degree we will miss out by a couple of places.Frustrating on both counts.

      • RichardM says:

        One swallow…not to say a lucky goal. Villa’s problems run deep, one win alone isn’t going to save them – they need another three on the bounce. If they stay up from this position I think it would be a new Premier record.

        That said I don’t think we’ll make the play-offs, so looks liike we will be playing them next season!

      • almajir says:

        Their situation is as dismal as it can get. They’re down.

    • Shirley Blue says:

      FFS cheer up. If Swansea beat Sunderland at home tonight they are still 10 points from safety with an inferior goal difference. That means to get out of the relegation zone they have to win four games while everybody else around them pick up none – it isn’t going to happen.
      They are going to have to pull off the greatest survival come back in Premier League history to stay up. They are going to need something like 38 points to stay up so that’s 27 points from 17 games – that’s title winning form after they have only won two games all season.
      As for Blues we are only 2 points off 6th place with Brighton in free fall. We still have a great chance but we need some new players to give us a chance – no doubt about that.

      • BhamCityJulian says:

        Hi SB. I don’t feel miserable so no need for me to cheer up. As KK said “I’d love but, just love it (if the went down)”. I’ll be gleefully dancing on their grave like the rest of you. I just don’t think it’s a clear cut as you do.

    • Tony says:

      The v ile are dead and buried

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Where making new signings is concerned, I’m not sure that what we think we need is the same as what the manager thinks we need. I can’t begin to imagine what he’s planning.

    “Without giving positions away, at least another defender, probably two players in the attacking third of the pitch – you can term that wherever you want..” is a bit ambiguous to say the least.

    Perhaps a full back, perhaps a winger, perhaps… what else? It’s a bugger waiting, but personally, I can’t wait to see what he comes up with.

    • atko says:

      Whatever we need we simply can’t afford and that’s fact! Quality costs. We proved we can get by with what we have and if we are hoping to make a challenge for a playoff place we need to gamble. We need to go all out for a quality playmaker in midfield. I would rather gamble all the money we have on such a player than bring in cover for this and that who may not be required. What have we got to lose?

    • ChrisG says:

      Well staffs, I could help Mr Rowett along with that decision, we urgently need a creative midfielder, 1 or possibly 2 centre backs, a left & a right back (i’ve always defended Caddis but his defending last nite was dire) & we need another striker, one who knows where the goal is & takes more than one shot every other game.

      • StaffsBlue says:

        I think maybe that’s a job for the summer. For now, we need to stengthen our weakest points. For me, that’s central defence and centre midfield… and if there’s any dosh left, possibly a natural left-footed wide man.

        • ChrisG says:

          Ye but i’m greedy staffs, I want it all & I want it now!!!, I wanna see beautiful fast free flowing football with defenders who will put their bodies on the line to protect a lead, wingers who leave defenders for dead & midfielders that don’t pull out of 50/50’s, but most of all i’d like it to be US that plays like that!!!

      • BhamCityJulian says:

        I agree with you ChrisG which I why I think promotion is at least a season away.

    • Tony says:

      We need a left back, a scheming midfielder and a striker, technically Toral is our best player, play him down the middle not out wide Its easy, as for the guy from Sunderland we don’t need him just like that guy Ferguson a couple of years back who rotted on the bench.
      Staffs your love for wingers is well known and out of date, the days of a guy rampaging down the flanks crossing and a big number 9 heading the ball home are gone, they finished 40 odd years ago

  • Mitchell says:

    If we were mid-table and just enjoying security then our squad is adequate.Pushing on is very hard and realistically we need almost a full overhaul to get a foothold into 5/6 spot. Staffs is right regarding where do you start-all over the pitch-good left back,Strong CH to accompany Morrison,quality winger and CF who scores goals. All very difficult for GR to prioritise with paltry funds. Live in hope as always but best if we don’t analyse the team too much as it doesn’t do us much good. Next season wherever we are-this team will have to be totally upgraded.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I think Forest’s goal highlighted the weakness we’ve had in defence for the past 2 seasons… crosses into the box. Matt Mills barely had a challenge as he headed in. It’s not good enough and the problem should have been addressed long before now. A dominant left-sided centre back is a must, or the opposition will continue to exploit that weakness.

      In most games, we create enough chances to win three games… but we’re still coming up short where sticking sticking the ball in the net is concerned. It’s so frustrating to see chance after chance go begging.

      Those are the two weaknesses that need sorting for me.

      • Womble Joe says:

        Agreed.

        There was an identical chance a few moments before where there striker got a free header in between Robbo and Morrison. They had a few words bumped fists and carried on.

        • StaffsBlue says:

          Too much nicey nicey in the back four. We need a big nasty bas*ard in there, who is going to pull ’em up by their bootlaces and get them organised. Make him captain too, because Morrison is never captain material in a million years.

      • Mitchell says:

        Agree Staffs. How many centre halves have now? Lowry,Harding,Spector,Robinson,Baba etc. partner for Morrison is a must and as you pointed out Mills goal typified the claim. Against Derby if no one bought in has to be Grounds. However as Dave Mann put it many times- whoever comes in has to go straight in the first eleven.No potential nor one for the squad BUT straight in.

        • StaffsBlue says:

          Absolutely. I see no point in bringing in players we rarely ever use. Halford was a wasted loan and I don’t know what Lowry has to do to get a start in his proper position. He’s not the greatest defender in the world, but he’s more dominant in the air than either Morrison, Spector or Robinson. Please Mr Rowett, no more waste please.

        • BhamCityJulian says:

          We glibly talk about Grounds for CB because he’s a tall defender who can head the ball. We have no idea if he can read the play, has positional sense and is strong in a challenge. If it is so obvious he is suitable how Gary never played him there even in friendliest?

    • Shirley Blue says:

      We don’t need an overhaul. We need a boost from a couple of players like Tesche and Fabbrini gave us last season,

  • Womble Joe says:

    Hate going to Forest these days never seems to be enough seats and the steward gestapo never tire of irritating the f**k out of our fans for standing in gangways.

    Thought the game was OK with two similar teams, as with Bournemouth we had a bit of bad luck in front of goal.

    Bring on the Rams we practically ended their season at theirs last year.

  • Womble Joe says:

    Oops apologies for the swear word there

  • Carl71 says:

    Womble Joe i agree entirely the stewards have historically always been bxxtards but tbf Blues fans dont help by continually trying their luck it does grate though. poor ref shame we couldnt come away with all 3 points i for one would have been £258.00 richer ah well onto Derby Navigation for 12 on it KRO

  • Richard Granfield says:

    I was at the City Ground last night and these are my opinions:-
    Blues started the game with a very defensive formation of 4-5-1, in other words without a No.10.
    This meant Donaldson was not only isolated but had to contend with both Mills and Manciene.
    When we did get another player in the box Toral scored a great header from a Caddis cross. I must say that Caddis must have been been practising crosses in training because his crossing has improved greatly in the past few games.
    Second half Blues dominated and Forest were there for the taking if Gary had been more positive.
    Shinnie or Vaughan should have been put on in place of the more defensive minded Davis much earlier than when Vaughan actually appeared. But an away point is not to be sniffed at.
    I thought Forest’s David Vaughan gave a performance in midfield which exemplified the type of player Blues need in that position before he was harshly red-carded.

  • ChrisG says:

    What has happened to the team from the second half of last season & the beginning of this?, it’s virtually the same players yet at times they play like strangers, & why all of a sudden have we started playing hoof ball?. When we put our minds to it we can play the pass & move attacking football that can match any team in this division yet at times we can’t seem to put 2 passes together. Rowett wants us to play on the counter & i’m fine with that, but to do that we need more players moving forward & so often our forwards end up isolated.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Sometimes, I think it’s the defensive shape that hold us back. You can understand that we need that shape, but now and again, the shackles could do with loosening.

  • We ain’t going to get everything we asked for at Christmas this year , first thing with three points for a win and one for a draw, we have to go for goal scoring first to be able to win , we need more shots on target per game to overcome bad refereeing mistakes , needs must comes to mind as it as always been so , perhaps three centre backs at the back in a 3+2+3+2 or 3+4+3 ,we need another striker , an attacking scoring playmaker , a fast left wing back , and a very tough very tall centre back that is a pretty good passer of a ball , and then GRs ability to mix and match to get the best team out of the squad , and very important the best bench for the type of team we are playing , ONWARD and UPWARD,

    • KC says:

      Very good summary William of what we need. I think most of us our saying the same thing ( hopefully including GR}. It seems to me that it is difficult to prioritise within those 4 requirements and we are unlikely to get them all.

    • BhamCityJulian says:

      Gary tried three at the back in the first half at Reading last season and Caddis and Grounds were lost. Unless they’re both replaced its not going to happen.

  • Andy says:

    I would make a cheeky bid for James Chester at the Albion loan until the end of the season, not really getting a game at the moment… or Wheater at Bolton would try for a permanant with the way they are having to ship players, there is surely a deal to be had there, may be we could offer them Robbo back in a swap deal plus a bag of balls? attacking players, i would try and get Pugh from Bournemouth until the seasons end to replace Gray, although keep hearing Buckley from Sunderland is coming….. think if Thomas is not gonna be given another go then we need to ship him and get someone else in…Dwight Gayle please

  • AdamTrueBlue says:

    Rico Henry from Walsall is rumoured as a GR target for left back.

  • Richard Granfield says:

    Now we are “Safe” i.e. we only need 10 points from 20 games to hit 50 points, I wonder if Gary will change his philosophy of defensive counter attacking tactics to a more expansive, attractive and attacking style? Indeed have we the players to play that way?
    I for one hope that he will, because for all our relative success the performances have hardly been easy on the eye.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I’m not sure the manager has it in him to play that way. We should have brought the subs on and took the game to them whilst we were on top, instead of waiting another 10 minutes. I’m not a fan of Rowett’s substitutions tbh.. usually too late and too defensive.

  • Dave Mann says:

    Don’t give a toss about rumours or that the vile won , all I care about is two points dropped last night and Sheffield w and Ipswich winning this opening a four point gap instead of it being just the two , means we have to get something at Derby to not let the gap get to big … With them and Brighton in our sights also we can’t loose Saturday . Kro

  • Womble Joe says:

    It’s also a verb Dave, just so you know muck

  • AdamTrueBlue says:

    Has this blog turned into Open University English Lessons or are we still disussing Blues?

  • Womble Joe says:

    Discussing

  • So we are after Rico Henry , ? the fans need to know if the club have made any bids , we are not asking for names , just action being financial supporters of this club , as fans falling out with each other with lack of movement in the transfer market is not in the interest of the club ,with time in the window going by ,

  • Womble Joe says:

    Why alert other clubs?

    Trust GR Will

  • I think the only way blues are going to sign the likes of Clough or henry is by offering the clubs enough add ons to make them interested , and be swift about it to stop an auction ,

  • KC says:

    Seeing something in other people’s cast off’s and, doing a bit of toss of a coin business in Europe appears to be where we are in the transfer market. The Gray money and some that was previously promised seems to have created some excitement for us fans but whatever we have in the kitty doesn’t appear to be enough to excite some of the up and coming names and their agents/clubs that have been mentioned in the media, if it was ever more than rumours. Particularly in relation to the wealthy competition. I know he is the manager but I think GR has one hell of a job trying to make general comments on transfer policy when he is so restricted. What’s happened to Mr Panos ?
    Our recent run of results look pretty tidy but for this rigid system to keep working we need a tighter defence and midfield to make a bigger going forward contribution. Sorry to mention the past but breaking out at speed was at its best when Gray was at his best and he of course caused many frustrating moments this season. Hopefully Viv can make a big contribution to the speed element.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Viv Solomon-Otabor has signed a new three-and-a-half year deal.

  • paule says:

    How did Robert Teshe play against us last night & is there any chance of getting him back?

  • Kingstanding Maximums says:

    Another day gone. No signings.!!!

  • I must admit I have never seen a player deliberately throw is face down at a rising players boot to get a foul , and I still haven’t,

  • swissjonny says:

    Panos the polite Pannu.No ability,no track record-a puppet.

  • Texas Pete says:

    I am sure there is a mountain of deals being brokered every minute, but if we are going to buy players for money, there will be competition. So the negotiations will take and disappointments will be plenty. It is just that we are not a fly on the wall in any of this.
    One $$$ player please and perhaps a couple of rent to buy ones.

  • , the longer we wait the more exceptable the players we sign will be , rule of sods , page number 2 ,,,,,,,,,,,,, I personally think that Gary really fancies the two non league players , and a quality young star to go with them , which is the problem as everybody wants a young star . there are plenty of good under 25 players around though but not with the pace that the young suggested targets have….I think we are going to trust GR a bit longer , grrrr. Kro

  • I think Dave went to bierton road school , I loved that school , only trouble with it was if I made to many spelling mistakes Mr rose caned me , funny though I respected mister Rose on leaving school more than anybody ,not because he was such a sound person which he was , not because on giving me the cane it always hurt him more than it did me , but because he had a soft spot for blues . KRO …BCJ

    • KC says:

      Bierton Rd Primary and Juniors until Waverley 1959, Brilliant childhood !

    • Dave Mann says:

      I actually went to washwood Heath school William so not quite correct but I tend to sometimes get the spelling wrong but there’s many on here including yourself who are just as bad so from now on I will keep my eyes open for anyone who corrects me on spelling mistakes so tread carefully …….by the way ChrisG I thought R ON OH!!! Was Black Country slang for yes !! .. I state that I remain a brummie mate :-) kro

  • Clough staying put for now.

  • BhamCityJulian says:

    From today’s Beeb Gossip page “Chelsea’s Ghana left-back Baba Rahman, 21, is growing frustrated with his lack of first-team football since joining the Blues from Augsburg in August.(Bild, via Guardian). Makes you think

    • Richard Granfield says:

      I wonder what his wages are? If they are less then £8k a week I think we are in with a chance. Lol.

  • Wolves after Danish left back.

  • mrblueskyelo says:

    Blimmey, does the Forest ground hold 140000 supporters? Or maybe Wet Matt is dreaming of the River Plate, pmsl! KRO!

  • Mitchell says:

    Derby game is a pivotal one for GR. 3pts and his knocking on Panos door for window signing will take on a huge significance. this Championship is littered with fluky results resulting in many unexpected away wins against nailed on home bankers. Pointers for a Blues win is on-Vaughan due a goal,Don.due a goal and our born again Stern John in the name of Maghoma imo gives us a real chance of victory. This game,for me,at a critical window stage holds the lot.

  • mrblueskyelo says:

    Matt says:
    January 13, 2016 at 12:33 am
    2 red cards fo Oliveria…. When is it a red card when your player goes through the back of ours?? Vaughs red card by your cheating 6ft 3 cheating 9 diving all over the place and puts his face down to three feet of the ground….. Your keeper hand balling it out side the area on a clear goal scoring chance and three defenders going through Mendex before he it given a yellow card…… I agree and so do most of the 140000 Forest fans and the media that the ref was shit but it was just in our favour
    …… He should never ref again

  • Only funning you Dave , what I was really saying was anybody that supports blues is OK by me ….KRO

    • Dave Mann says:

      No problem mate , just thought I would make my point that’s all … We will all have a dig at one another now and again but as you say we are all Bluenoses so that’s something we will always have in common . KRO

  • Bluey says:

    I think all those saying the vile are doomed perhaps should look at some facts. I reckon they need just short of 1.5 points a game. That is way short of title-winning form as some would say,it equates to a mid-table finish. Apologies if my maths has let me down. More importantly,of course,i see some are still mooting a possibility of the play-offs for us. Not going to happen.KRO.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      The jammiest club in the premier. Until it’s mathematically impossible for them to avoid the drop… I for one won’t believe it. I said the same before Xmas.

    • Dave Mann says:

      Your propably right Bluey but it’s still possible … As for the vile there propably go down but it’s still possible to stay up also so it’s all down to opinions at this stage of the season . KRO

  • StaffsBlue says:

    This is such a boring transfer window. Makes you wonder wtf it was that was making Mr Rowett so excited? :-/

    • Mitchell says:

      Something changed within GR since those heady excited remarks a month ago. We will never know.
      Gray money is being kept very low key.

  • Kingstanding Maximums says:

    Another day gone. No signings.!!!!!!

  • I would have thought this week would have been the time to buy from Walsall ,,as they have three teams at the bottom half of the table coming up , nothing seems to make sense in transfer windows any more , if we wait till the end of the window we will have no chance and they won’t be quality players left ,so what are we waiting for , for God sake get Barry fry back as a mediator let’s get passion back at the club , KRO.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Forest have lost their appeal against David Vaughan’s red card. He’ll now serve a 3 match suspension. Should be back just in time for Rowett to sign him lol.

  • I think blues are going to have to play all players that can score against derby , as sitting back to much is to much of a gamble ., I think blues will have to be more direct at goal as well , he who dares ,

  • AussieBlue says:

    From my limited antipodean perspective, it does seem like this squad is fulfilling the legendary spirit of the ‘Battling Blues.’ With some of those close chances being blessed with a bit o’ luck, we could very well have a good run of 3pt games starting with Derby. If hearts stay strong and every player gives his all; we could just be sneaking into the play-offs. What an accomplishment that will be given the BIHL handicap! KRO

  • Andrew says:

    Why people get so excited about playoff position is beyond me, same teams have been fighting into that for many seasons and got nowhere. We will not leave this league for years fact only to be relegated possibly if we continue to sell assets and inevitably lose rowet. We need 5 years to get back to premier at least.

    • Art Watson says:

      Andrew.

      Spot on.

      Best post of the year.

    • BhamCityJulian says:

      Exactly. Which is why you only spend money to get you automatic promotion. You aim for the playoffs organically and then cross your fingers

    • Luke says:

      I understand what you’re saying, but it’s not necessarily right. The play-offs are often won by a team that finishes fifth or sixth, and there are precedents for those teams to go on and do well in the Prem, at least for a season or two.

      In the absence of any proper funding from HK, scraping into the play-offs and battling our way through them is really the only hope we have of going up. And it might be the only way that we can hang on to our manager too.

      Whichever team wins the play-offs, the challenge is the same – rebuilding/upgrading the squad to Prem survival standards, despite starting two weeks later than the other promoted teams.

      • Art Watson says:

        The point is you have to invest to get to the play offs.

        We are what we are- a mediocre middle of the table team with a very good manager who in my opinion without the necessary funds will not be around next season.

        • Luke says:

          You’d think so, wouldn’t you? But we’re currently within an ace of being in the top six, despite having lost three very winnable home games (Charlton, Rotherham, Huddersfield). The squad maybe needs more depth, but if we can stay injury-free then we have an outside chance with the squad as it is. We’re good at the difficult games, it’s the easy ones we need to sort out.

  • Dave Mann says:

    There’s nothing wrong in getting a little bit exited about being in the mix Andrew , it’s beyond me that your so negative even though in truth you maybe right , it’s better for the soul to be positive than negative , try it !! :-) kro

    • Mitchell says:

      That comment by Andrew really concerns me. Your reply Dave was correct and to the point-however it saddens me that Andrew can literally throw the towel in even if we did get a final play off spot. Many clubs have sneaked in and got promoted to the Prem. If it is beyond even one fan about the excitement of being in a play off then it is worrying. Therefore from today any other fans who feel like Andrew can contact David-Mitchell Life Coaching Agency who will restore any lost hope that may have crept in since Darren Carters penalty.

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I agree.We might end upfinishing 8th or 10th… but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have a crack at it. We’re not far from being a very good team, so I see no reason not to be optimistic. We’ve had enough doom and gloom over the last 4 years.. let’s enjoy the upturn whilst we can. If we fall short, at least we’ll have tried.

      • BhamCityJulian says:

        Because the same money can’t be spent twice.

        • StaffsBlue says:

          Sorry, not with you. I never mentioned money. If we can get a couple of better players in, to improve what we already have, we could have a tilt at the top 6. Whether that be permanent signings or loans, that’s up to the club.

  • AussieBlue says:

    Andrew – you post like a vile troll. Get some belief man. Defeatist talk was a treasonous act in WW11 – why do you think that was?


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