Sometimes, when the football gets really boring, you can try and do a Trumpton Fire Brigade with the opposition team sheet. You remember Trumpton Fire Brigade? Pugh, Pugh, Barney McGrew, Cuthbert, Dibble and Grubb. Well, Lutontown's Fire Brigade would consist of Shea, Rea, Dewsbury-Hall, Tunnicliffe, Collins and Lee. You have to include the substitutes, of course, otherwise it won't work.
Not that the game against Lutontown was boring. Some aspects were, naturally, such as Lutontown themselves, who view football as a study in advanced clockwork. Any team can play like Lutontown if you drill them hard enough, then you just wind them up and let them go.
Another boring aspect of the game was doing this report, not because we don't enjoy doing reports per se but because we hate saying THE SAME THINGS OVER AND OVER AGAIN. Forest start okay, concede sloppily to ruin the first half, come on strong in the second half and equalise. Match after match. Even having a man sent off didn't change the script significantly.
Another boring thing is this preoccupation with Forest "starting slowly". It's boring because, at least in this match, it's not true. Forest were doing fine. Knockout was causing real problems, Taylor came close to scoring, Forest's pressing forced Lutontown to clockwork backwards time after time. Then Lutontown scored from a sloppily conceded corner. No, Forest did not start slowly. What they did do was not score early, or even not score first. Some people are of the opinion that if Forest were ever to score first they would thump somebody ten nil. Other people aren't.
We don't like doing player assessments, but if we did we'd say that Brice Samba doesn't seem to have much to do these days apart from one good save. Christie is probably a better attacker than defender (great cross). McKenna doesn't mess about. Toby Figgis occasionally does. Ioannou seems to have fallen through several floors of rotten wood and landed in the cellar where the junk is kept. One thing he shares with Wayne Rooney, however, is that his team plays better when he's not there. Colback seems to be getting over his obesity problem, but he's not there yet. Yates, whose in-off got Forest their point, is just a big horsey man-of-the-match horse. Knockout is small, muscular and classy, like Bruichladdich Port Charlotte 10 Year Old Islay Single Malt. Sameobi continues to be as entertaining as a swivelling one man band, whatever that is. Lolley seems trapped in some weird phase-shifting experiment where he inconveniently drifts off into another dimension. Some say that, on occasion, you can see right through him. Taylor looks a good 'un, but will have to start scoring hat-tricks before we afford him Collymore potential. Jenkinson came on for Ioannou and, oddly, seemed more comfortable with his boots on the wrong feet.
We'll leave the problems about not scoring enough, gruesome kit, midfield selection, lack of subs etc, to Mister Hughton, because he's a better manager than we will ever be. We'll just wait patiently until Forest go nuclear, which we have every expectation of happening in the not too distant future.
Even without the Grosicki.
MEANWHILE, HERE'S HENRY LONGFELLOW'S NOTTINGHAM FOREST VIDEO BLOG ARCHIVE...