OPINION: '˜I've had enough, it's time for Clough'
Change is desperately needed at the City Ground.
Having sat through one of the most frustrating Nottingham Forest displays of recent times, at home to Barnsley on Bank Holiday Monday, I can’t see how things will get any better until change comes - on and off the pitch.
We are told the proposed takeover of the club is expected to happen this week and it cannot come soon enough. How it has been allowed to rumble on for this long is a topic for another day and one supporters deserve an explanation for from the club’s hierarchy.
John Jay Moores was first revealed as the man fronting the American led consortium towards the beginning of October - almost three months ago - and the form on the pitch has coincided largely with the uncertainty off of it.
Crikey, even Notts County have got things moving faster than Forest!
Philippe Montanier’s side sit two points off the drop zone, without a win in six matches, and the threat of relegation to League One a very real one. We are not too good to go down, in fact, it’s quite the opposite. Current form would suggest a scrap to stay up.
The defeat to Barnsley was narrow in scoreline only. The Tykes’ midfield trio ran circles round Forest early on, with several needless free-kicks presented to the visitors in good areas. Fortunately for us they couldn’t take advantage otherwise the margin of victory could have been greater.
Other than Jack Hobbs’ towering header in the second half, that the ‘keeper looked to have brushed on to the cross bar, I don’t recall us hitting the target, or even putting Barnsley under any sustained amount of pressure to even look like scoring.
In print it was lacklustre but there was much more colourful language used in the stands and on the cold walk home by many. The New Year came with new hope but optimism, in hindsight, peaked before a ball was kicked and quickly faded.
A mention on the support, upwards of 22,000 for a home game after Christmas was fantastic. £20 for an adult ticket and kids offers were great incentives and show what could be done with reasonable pricing - even with one point from a possible 15 prior to kick-off.
As for the man in charge of the team, Montanier needs to engineer a vast improvement from his players quickly otherwise his days will surely be numbered. Some might suggest he’s on borrowed time already but there is some sympathy for the man who has had to piece together a team.
Forest are a long way from the free-flowing football we saw at the start of the season and look all too likely to concede. In our current state we need a drill sergeant to get the best out of these players and see us to safety. Has Montanier got it in him?
One man who has, and proven he possesses those characteristics throughout his football career both as a player and a manager, is Nigel Clough. The football might not be everyone’s cup of tea but we need discipline in the side. Clough would command that.
For me, he’s everything Forest need right now.