Vital Nottingham Forest Editor Kev Finnegan joins us to help preview Saturday’s game
Vital Nottingham Forest Editor Kev Finnegan joins us to help preview Saturday’s game…
Where are Forest in terms of your expectations for the season?
In all honesty, flirting with the Play-Off’s at this stage of the season is exactly where I hoped and realistically thought we would be.
Tenth position and 5 points off 6th place is about right in my opinion.
Sean O’Driscoll should still be in a job, right?
It’s hard to disagree.
I was one that was slightly disappointed with his initial appointment, but he soon won me over and he did a great job in helping to rebuild the squad and in consolidating our position in the division.
I was dismayed at the time of his dismissal and still am, but it’s history now and if we finish the season in a higher position than when he was sacked, that would probably placate people like me.
What do the fans make of Alex McLeish’s appointment?
I think it’s fair to say that at the time it was announced, the majority of Forest fans were bemused, perplexed and confused. I know I was.
Since he arrived, he has gone some way to dismiss the belief that he’s little more than a ‘hoof ball merchant.’ We’ve actually been playing quite well, in the last two games at least.
If he continues the way he is at present, then he will quickly dispel any fear fans have of the negative, anti football, we thought we would have to endure. Early days, but first impressions are good.
Differences between the two managers?
O’Driscoll played possession football. It was very easy on the eye, but had little end product.
He was often accused of worrying more about the opposition and some of his tactics and team selections would back that belief up. He was very calm and laid back, never got flustered, which led some to say he lacked passion and was unable to get his teams ‘up for it’ on a match day.
I’m only going to judge McLeish from the past two games, because I feel that prior to that, he was experimenting and learning about the squad.
He’s more direct in his approach, but he has had us playing some neat and tidy and at times quite entertaining football. He appears to be a much more feisty type than O’Driscoll.
It’s very early days, but I’m hoping that his more incisive and direct style starts to deliver results.
Are the Al-Hasawi’s a good thing for Forest or not?
I don’t think we will be able to make a fair assessment of the new owners until this season has finished.
Although I am pretty much on the fence as to how good or bad they will be in the future, it has to be said that without them coming in and taking over, the future of NFFC was very bleak.
In the short term they have ensured the survival of the club and for that we are all truly grateful. The first five months went unbelievably well and they assembled an entirely new squad in a remarkably short space of time (much like yourselves).
Since December, there has been some major upheaval and in my eyes some strange decisions have been made. As with all things time will tell, but they’ve had much to contend with and much to sort out.
Who will be the key man for you on Saturday?
Billy Sharp is our main goal threat and Radoslaw Majewski our most creative player. We are currently desperately missing Andy Reid through injury and he was providing most assists.
One player you’d drive to his next club & why?
Lewis McGugan. He has so much natural talent and ability, but he doesn’t produce it often enough.
On his day and when he puts his mind to it, he’s the best player we have. He’s infuriating to watch at times and it all seems such a waste. He can ghost past players as if they weren’t there and hit a ball from virtually anywhere on the pitch and find the back of the net. Sadly we don’t see that side of his game often enough.
One Watford player you’d pinch & why?
Matej Vydra please. 16 goals in 28 appearances says it all. He also bagged the points at your place earlier this season, with both goals in our dire 2-0 defeat.
Andy Reid is out with hamstring problems, as is Daniel Ayala. Adlene Guedioura is away at the African Cup of Nations tournament.
Tough one to call (Aren’t they all?). You’re flying and we desperately need the win to build some momentum.