One or two Forest fans will need to sit down, some of these facts may come as a surprise….
- Our current squad includes 12 new players compared to last season’s (plus Adlène Guedioura). It can take one new signing a while to settle into a team, so 12 new players are obviously going to take a significant time to gel, especially when they haven’t had a proper pre-season together.
- Sean O’Driscoll has been in the job for 77 days, which isn’t very long. During that time he’s had to build a completely new squad, convert the extant team members to a playing style very different from those of last season and assess his numerous options to work out his best XI and formation during a busy fixture period that doesn’t afford much time on the training pitch. He had under a month between being appointed and his first competitive match and he’s working with a backroom staff that is now three regimes old. Given all that, is it really surprising we haven’t come up with ‘Plan B’ yet? Be thankful we have a Plan A!
- Blackburn Rovers are actually quite good. Forget the circus surrounding the club’s owners and erstwhile manager. They have spent well over £20 million on their squad and were among pre-season favourites for promotion. The fact that we kept a strike force of Portugese international Nuno Gomes and £8 million man Jordan Rhodes at bay for 90 minutes is quite an achievement.
- Our two first-choice strikers and joint top goal-scorers were both suspended last night. In their places we had a midfielder (Lansbury) and a striker (Sharp) who haven’t played much football recently. In goal Blackburn had a man with 41 England caps. Is it really surprising we didn’t score?
- There are 37 games left in the season. That’s a lot of games left to decide how this campaign pans out. We have 11 points from our nine games so far, which is two more than last season. In 2000/10 we had 10 points from 9 games, and in 2010/11 with had 12, and both those campaigns resulted in us reaching the play-offs.
- We’re at the start of a new era. The very start. The Al-Hasawis seem committed to the long-run and they certainly haven’t yet spent their wealth to the position where it’s promotion or bust this season. Even if we spend this whole season in mid-table and being held to draws at home, the following year we will be stronger, and again the year after that.
Please, Forest fans who thought it appropriate to boo the team at the final whistle last night (thankfully a minority), forget Promotion and Play-offs for a while, and remember three other P-words: Patience, Perspective and Positivity.
And if you can’t manage those P-words and still want to boo a solid performance from your own team, here’s another one for you: piss off.