September 30 1999

Contract Joy For Doyle: Kevin Doyle, one of Forest's rising stars of the future has undergone five operations at the QMC to fix the double break in his leg.

David Platt has helped the youngsters recovery along by offering him a one-year extension to his current contract. Plat said: "This is a bad break. When you're injured like this at such a young age, it is tough mentally. But we think very highly of Kevin and I want him to have peace of mind. I want to support him because he has talent and I'd like to think that he'll be in the Forest first team in years to come."

September 28 1999

Reserves Draw Against Leicester: Forest reserves drew 1-1 with Leicester City reserves this evening at The City Ground. Carlos Merino scored Forest's goal with Stuart Campbell scoring the equalizer for Leicester.

The good news is that David Platt played for 70 minutes in a bid to get match fit, and midfielder Steve Melton, who has been out with a hamstring injury for the last six games managed a full 90 minutes.

September 26 1999

Forest Draw Wednesday: Forest have been drawn away at  Sheffield Wednesday in the next round of The Worthington Cup. The tie will take place during the week commencing October 11 1999.

Under the new look cup competition Forest also know who their opponents will be all the way through to the final should they make it. Should they get past Sheffield Wednesday then they will face either Derby or Bolton in the next round. They will avoid Man Utd and Liverpool unless they make it all the way to the final and they can only meet Arsenal if they make it to the semi-final stages.

Doyle To Miss Rest Of Season: Rising young Forest star, Kevin Doyle  has been told he will miss the rest of the season after breaking his leg in two places during a friendly game against Sheffield Wednesday.

September 25 1999

Forest Lose In Injury Time: Forest dropped a point at The Reebok Stadium today when Bolton scored an injury time winner to make the final score 3-2 to the home side.

September 23 1999

Lars Time He'll Do That: Ex-Forest midfielder Lars Bohinen has found himself in deep water with the Derby powers that be. The Norwegian runs a website to keep his fans back home up to date with his career in England. On it he has published his opinions after the 05- drubbing at the hands of Sunderland last weekend. In the article he allegedly (I can't read Norwegian so I have to take other peoples word for it)  criticised Jim Smith for leaving him on the bench and the Derby training methods.

The Mirror, however, did print an article based on the content of the website and on reading this article Jim Smith has taken action against Bohinen in the form of a fine, seven day suspension and put him on the transfer list.

Bohinen has again published his thoughts about these events on his website, translated by a Norwegian Forest fan I am told they read as follows: "As of today manager Jim Smith has suspended me for 1 week, and said that I will never play for Derby again. I'm free to find a new club. 

"A minimized and worsened version [of his article on the web] appeared in the Mirror yesterday, and the manager based his decision on that article forging me a new position as unemployed football player. He was not interested in hearing my version of this case at all, he just held up the paper and said that it stood there in black and white. All my argumentation was in vain, something I take as a serious lack of trust and total lack of respect.

"But that is the status of this matter now. I'm vacant for a week, and have to use that week to find a new club. Anybody interested?"

Anyone out there who can read Norwegian, and wants to see exactly what Lars did say on his website can find it at  http://www.sportsprofiler.com/bohinen/index.html

September 22 1999

0-0 Sees Forest Through: Forest got a 0-0 draw at Ashton Gate this evening which sees them safely through to the next round of the Worthington Cup.

Despite an injury depleted squad, Platt managed to put out a second string team that played with pride and confidence. Special mention must be given to the youngsters who were making their first team debuts, especially David Prutton.

The downer for the night was Mark Crossley who fell awkwardly and had to be carried off during the first half. Larry Lloyds commentary on 106 at half-time told us that he has suffered ankle ligament damage and will be out for 7-10 days. This means he will miss the Bolton game on Saturday and, if things don't go well, the Barnsley game on Friday week.

Forest Injury Worries: Forest travel to Ashton Gate tonight to take on Bristol City in the second leg of of the second round Worthington Cup tie. Forest hold a slender 2-1 lead from the first leg, and because of this it looked like they would not be able to do as they often do and rest a lot of the first team players. However, fate and Forest's ever growing injury list have played their part and it now looks like there could be a few selection headaches for this evening's game.

Ian Wright will miss the game as West Ham do not want him cup-tied and John Burns picked up a bad knock in Sunday's game and will definitely miss the game. Chettle, Scimeca, Matrecano, Rogers and Hjelde also picked up knocks during Sunday's game, they will all undergo fitness tests today, but some or all of these are expected to take some part in tonight's game.

This means that Platt will have to bring through more youngsters to cover for the injured players and David Prutton and Richard Cooper have been drafted into the squad along with Chris Doig and Carlos Merino, though there is no news on whether last nights hat-trick hero David Freeman will play any part. Freeman got his hat-trick when Forest reserves beat Spurs reserves 3-1 at The City Ground last night.

Todd Resigns: Colin Todd, Bolton Manager, has resigned today citing financial issues as the source of his problems.

Why is this of interest to Forest Fans? Simply, because a poorly performing team (Bolton are fifth from bottom) that loses it's manager more often than not goes on to win it's next game. Guess who we're playing on Saturday..... as if you didn't know already.

Muscat Told To Report Wright: Wolves Boss Colin Lee has told Kevin Muscat that he should make a formal complaint to the PFA about Ian Wright's comments in a newspaper yesterday. Wright called Muscat 'a lowlife' and 'a nobody' in his column in yesterday's Sun.

Lee said that there is a code of conduct amongst managers that prevents them from calling other players and managers, so he sees no reason why the players themselves should not have a similar code of conduct.

If Muscat does report Wright to the PFA then the on-loan striker could find himself in more trouble, though nobody seemed sure exactly what punishment (if any) the PFA could impose on him.

September 21 1999

Muscat Responds: Kevin Muscat has responded to Ian Wright's jibes earlier today. In tonight's edition of the Nottingham Evening Post he says: "Ian Wright has had such an illustrious career, but you would have thought he would have grown up by now.

"He kicked the ball away for his first yellow card and lashed out at me for his second. He has only himself to blame. He shouldn't try to blame anyone else. It is down to his own discipline. I hear he has apologized to his team mates and manager and so he should, he has let them down." 

A Wright Bit Of Bother: Ian Wright has today caused a bit of a stir with comments in his column in The Sun newspaper. Wright, upset about his sending off on Sunday has apologized to his team mates, manager, the fans, and Brian Clough for his behaviour on Sunday and admits that he should have known better. However, he goes on to tell us that it was Kevin Muscat who wound him up and goes on to call Muscat 'a lowlife' and 'a nobody'.

Wright claims the incident that sparked their on-pitch battle was when Muscat shouted "over", making Wright leave the ball to run through, thinking it was Dougie Freedman behind him. However, on turning, Wright saw that he had let the ball run through to a grinning Muscat, who had called out despite a so called gentleman's agreement among players that they won't do things like that.

I've got a feeling this one could run for a few days yet.

September 20 1999

Taylor To Be Honoured: Peter Taylor, who died in October 1990, was Brian Clough's right hand man during the glory years of the League Championship, League Cups and European Cups. 

Following yesterday's opening of 'The Brian Clough Stand', Forest Chairman Eric Barnes has released news that Peter Taylor is also to be commemorated at The City Ground. Mr. Barnes said: "We want to talk to Peter's family fairly soon. We want to mark what he did in an appropriate manner. We have a number of thoughts on what we want to do."

After making his return to The City Ground yesterday, Brian Clough was informed of the club's decision and he went on to say: "Peter should not be forgotten. His contribution to Forest was immense. It would have been lovely if the Executive Stand had been named after both of us."

Wright Out For Fulham: Ian Wright has today apologized for getting sent off in yesterday's game against Wolves. He will miss the visit of Fulham on October 10 when he will sit out a one match suspension.

September 19 1999

Cloughie Honoured As Forest Get A Poor Draw: Forest snatched a point from a dismal 1-1 draw against Wolves at The City Ground today.

There was a nice moment just before kick-off, when, as Brian Clough took his seat in the directors box the whole ground, including the Wolves fans, rose to give the great man a standing ovation.

Wolves started the brighter side and Forest looked decidedly dodgy in defence. Wolves took full advantage of this, and Akinbiyi was throwing himself around in an effort to notch that all important first goal for Wolves. The visitors took the lead early on, Akinbiyi had beaten the Forest defence to produce a good save from Crossley, unfortunately the ball fell straight to the feet of Darren Bazeley (looking distinctly offside - need to see that one on TV again) who slotted it home.

Forest started to pick up the pace a little and by the end of the first half were starting to take control of the game, unfortunately they couldn't make it pay and went in 1-0 down at the break.

Now it was Brian Cloughs turn, the great man arrived on the pitch to officially open the renamed Executive Stand as 'The Brian Clough Stand'. He appeared with his Grandson to another great ovation from the fans (again, credit to the Wolves fans for joining in). He was presented with a miniature of the bust he had unveiled in the main reception just before the start of the game, and then Nigel Clough joined him on the pitch, where he went a short work-about to the delight of the fans. Best half-time entertainment we've had for a long time. Lets hope he comes back soon.

The second half started with Wolves attacking straight away, the attack broke down and Rogers picked up the cleared ball, steaming down the left wing he produced an excellent cross to find the head of Allou, who headed home the equalizer. Only forty second gone, what a start, we could win this! - No we couldn't, the game fizzled out after this and was then marred by the sending of of Ian Wright for a second bookable offence. There was no argument that he should have been booked for the foul on Muscat, but his first offence, getting booked for kicking the ball away was silly, if he hadn't done it he would have finished the game with just the one yellow card.

September 18 1999

I didn't Want To Leave: Carlton Palmer has told today's Football Post that he didn't want to leave Forest and he would have been happy to finish his career at The City Ground.

Palmer signed a three month loan deal with Coventry City yesterday, with the possibility that the move could become permanent for a fee of around 500,000.

The midfielders relationship with boss David Platt has deteriorated recently and this along with the pre-season problems when he refused to be a substitute for the Bradford City game appear to have forced his hand.

Palmer said: "It's not that I want to leave, but after all that's happened I think it's best to play my football elsewhere. There have been times when I haven't been very happy at Forest and things haven't worked out. We had a bad season last year and I've been disappointed with the start we've made to this campaign."

"What happened with Platt is in the past, and it's not as if he is pushing me out of the club. Not everything has been patched up between us, but we are both grown-ups and these things happen sometimes. What I did at Bradford didn't help the situation, but I felt I was justified in my reaction. I regret what's taken place but it wasn't my doing."

September 17 1999

Wright On For Another Month: Ian Wright has today signed up for another month on loan at Forest, much to the relief of most fans at The City Ground.

Wright still has about 10 days of his original months loan to go, but once he moves into the second month West Ham will be able to call him back with only 24 hours notice. Its also believed that negotiations are under way to see if the loan can be extended even further, possibly for the whole season.

Palmer Sent To Coventry: Out of favour Carlton Palmer has gone to Coventry City on a three month loan deal with a view to making the move permanent.

September 16 1999

New CE Announced: Forest have this evening announced the appointment of a new Chief Executive. Mark Arthur, currently Chief Executive of Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club, has been appointed as Chief Executive Designate of the Company.

Mark will take over as Chief Executive on 1st January 2000 from Philip Soar, who is reducing his day to day involvement in the Company to concentrate on his publishing and exhibition interests.

Philip Soar remains Deputy Chairman of Nottingham Forest Football Club and is the largest shareholder on the Board of the Company. He will also continue to represent the club with external bodies such as the Football League.

Lowest Gate for 40 Years: Forest revealed today that last nights gate of 5,015 was the third lowest gate since the War and the lowest gate since, by coincidence Forest played Bristol City in a League Cup tie in November 1960.

Forest defended their decision not to move the tie to Tuesday evening. They were one of only two clubs who opted to play their tie last night and faced direct competition with live TV broadcasts of Chelsea's European Cup game against AC Milan.

Forest lowered admission prices to 10 and 5 concessions for the game but this failed to attract many people to the ground. Phil Soar said: "We simply cannot charge any less and cover our costs."

However, Birmingham City lowered their prices to 5 and 1 concessions and managed to attract a crowd of over 17,000 for their match (admittedly played on Tuesday night). Using simple math's, and assuming a 75% full paying, 25% concessions split this means that Forest took approximately 44,000 gate money, while Birmingham City took approximately 68,000. I'm no great shakes as a businessman, but I know which I'd prefer if it was up to me.

September 15 1999

Forest Sneak Win: Forest managed to sneak a 2-1win this evening as they took on Second Division Bristol City in The Worthington Cup second round first leg at The City Ground.

Forest always dominated the game and never looked in any real danger. Marlon Harewood took the first goal very well when through one-on-one with the 'keeper, a situation that usually sees him blasting straight into the arms of the 'keeper. The on-to-one lessons must be working. Unfortunately City grabbed an equalizer from a corner within 90 seconds of the re-start and the teams went in all square at half-time.

Forest continued to apply pressure throughout the second half, and Freedman continued to play well outside the area, but seemed to lose his composure when inside the area. He missed four good chances that I counted.

Alan Rogers got the winner with a low curling free kick, bringing back memories of Psycho.

The tie is by no means over, and holding only a one goal lead Forest will travel to Ashton Gate next week with a fair bit of work to do to.

Clough Returns: Forest have finalized the details of Brian Cloughs return to The City Ground. Clough will be present at The City Ground on Sunday September 19 when Forest play Wolves in front of the BSkyB cameras.

Clough is the guest of honour for the game, where he will be unveiling a  bronze bust of himself in the main stand and at half-time he will appear on the pitch to formally open the renamed Executive stand as 'The Brian Clough stand'.

September 13 1999

Guinan - Fee Agreed: Forest have agreed a fee of 40,000 with Second Division Scunthorpe United for the services of striker Steve Guinan. Guinan is currently on loan at Scunthorpe after honouring a long standing agreement with Scunthorpe boss Brian Laws. If Guinan impresses Laws the deal will become permanent.

September 11 1999

Forest Sneak Point: Forest managed to escape from the Robin's nest with a point today after a 0-0 bore-draw against Swindon at The County Ground. I can't really think of anything else worth saying about the whole thing.

September 10 1999

Scunthorpe Take Guinan On Loan: Steve Guinan has moved to Scunthorpe on a one month loan with a view to a permanent deal after failing to break into the first team at Forest.


September 9 1999

Wright Wants To Stay: In an interview in tonight's Nottingham Evening Post, Ian Wright has said that  he wants West Ham to continue their winning streak, so that he can stay on at Forest and help out David Platt.
Wright currently has another half of his month loan at The City Ground left to run, but the enigmatic front man wants to stay on after that and help Forest go up. Wright said: "I want West Ham to do well so I can stay on at Forest and do something for the club. All my career has been in London. It's very exciting for me to come here. To go up you need to score goals and that is something that I can do."
With Paulo Wanchope and Paolo Di Canio currently ruling the roost in the forward stakes at Upton Park, it seems unlikely that Wright would get back into the side if he were to return even though Harry Redknapp made it clear that he wanted the striker back for European football at the end of the month.
Wright has hinted time and time again that he would like to continue at Forest, and it is obvious that he would like to mark his last season in football with a significant input to the club for a promotion push, rather than notching up the odd 20 minute run outs at the end of games for West Ham.
The news will undoubtedly come as a major boost to fans, players and the manager alike, as all have commented in the past week about how they feel Forest should do everything to keep the player at The City Ground.
And with Wright making all the right noises about staying on, that must surely go to making the job of convincing Harry Redknapp that little bit easier.

September 7 1999

Forest In Profit: Forest have today announced that they have turned around last years loss of 4.4million and turned in a profit of 1.3million.

This is believed to include the money made from the sale of Van Hooijdonk and Stone. Couple this money with the investment of Nigel Doughty and hopefully Forest will find themselves in a position to buy some new blood, or better still, hang on to Ian Wright.

September 4 1999

Dougie Double Fires Forest: Dougie Freedman got two goals in Forest's convincing 4-1 win over Walsall today. Mind you, it was only the second half that was convincing, Forest looked very edgy in the first half after going one down in only four minutes.

Forest applied pressure throughout the first half without achieving anything until the last minute when some excellent build up work from Petrachi enabled Louis-Jean to drive in a fierce cross for Freedman to head in. To be fair to Forest they were the dominant team in the first half and should have had two or three.

After the break Forest were a different team, playing flowing football and putting enormous pressure on the Saddlers defence. The pressure started to tell on Walsall, and on 71 minutes Petrachi broke through one-on-one with Walsall's keeper, Walker, and  all he could do with the on-rushing Petrachi was bring him down. Despite Walker's protestations that Petrachi had dived (TV replays show quite clearly that he didn't) the referee dismissed Walker and awarded Forest the penalty. Ian Wright, who missed a penalty against QPR last week was very quick to hand the ball to Steve Chettle and give the Captain the honour this week. Chett's didn't let us down and powered the ball into the right hand side of the goal.

Last week when Forest faced a 10 man QPR team they failed to make anything of the one man advantage, this time they were not going to make the same mistake. The upped the pressure on Walsall again and it wasn't too long before some excellent work by Petrachi again saw another deep cross going in and finding the head of Freedman  for his second goal.

Ian Wright, who had been inspirational all afternoon, to both his team mates and the crowd, wasn't going to miss out on the action either, and with only four minutes to go he got himself on the score-sheet when t he appeared to mis-control a pass from Scimeca, but had the presence of mind to keep his balance and go for the ball. He drove it low and wide past substitute 'keeper Emberson, and Forest walked off 4-1 winners.

Special mention must go to John Burns, a product of Forest's youth system, making his Forest debut. He had a great game and showed both skill and vision in his passing and off the ball play. There were no signs of nerves and he remained cool throughout. If he keeps this up then good things will come and hopefully he will become a regular in the first team.

September 3 1999

Beasant Back: With Mark Crossley on International duty this weekend for Wales, Dave Beasant is to make his first appearance for Forest this season against Walsall tomorrow at the City Ground.

David Platt is also expected to make his home debut for the club, though this is more likely to be as a substitute. 

Carlton Palmer is also expected to be fit, but Nigel Quashie remains doubtful. 

"We have now got a couple of days to work on things. Even if it is just 20 minutes after the usual training session it will help.

"Marlon has an abundance of talent and this will give us the chance to hone that ability more."

Palmer In Reserves: Carlton Palmer will be in action for the reserves tonight at the City Ground as they open their league season against Crystal Palace.

He is being played tonight to help build up his fitness levels. It is also likely that he will feature in the squad for this Fridays match against West Bromwich Albion, being televised live by SKY.

 


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