Date: 25th August 2006 at 4:54pm
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As perhaps the most experienced player in the Forest dressing room, Ian Breckin is more than aware of the emotional ups and downs a career in football provides.

As he puts it succinctly: ‘Just when you think you have cracked it, football has a nasty habit of kicking you in the teeth.’

On Monday, Forest suffered one such hammer blow, as former non-league side Accrington Stanley dumped them out of the Carling Cup.

But, after a start to the season that had seen them record four consecutive victories in League One, Breckin is seeing positive signs at the City Ground.

Having played a key role in Wigan’s promotion to the Premiership in the 2004/05 season, Breckin can see similar signs at Forest.

Although, as Monday night proved, he says they must not get carried away.

‘I think we are more confident than we were at the start of the season,’ he said. ‘When you keep winning you are only going to get more belief.

‘With Wigan, we had 17 or 18 games unbeaten at the start of that season and we went up.

‘You just get used to winning, it becomes a habit. At the moment, we are getting that way. I don’t want anyone to get carried away, but I can see the similarities between how things were then and how they are here.’

Breckin says Forest were disappointed with their performance at Accrington and says they must make amends.

‘In football there is always something around the corner

waiting to catch you out when you think you’ve cracked it.

‘That is what Monday night was. ‘We’ve had a great start to the season and maybe we weren’t mentally right for it. But we have to bounce back tomorrow.

‘You have to give credit to Accrington, because they played well.

‘There were a lot of shocks in the first round. You tend to get that – sometimes the smaller teams want it more.’

Forest have started the season with a new-look three-man central defence, which Breckin says has taken some time to get used to.

He believes they are starting to produce their best – but there is still an improvement to come.

‘We are playing a new system, which we are getting used to, but we have been looking pretty solid,’ he said. ‘We have only let one goal in (in the league) and we look like scoring goals.

‘There is always room for improvement, no matter which system you play. We have to keep trying to do that, hopefully that can push us forward.’

Huddersfield also suffered a cup shock, as they went out to Mansfield Town.

But Breckin is expecting a tough game against one of the sides he feels will be challenging come the end of the campaign.

‘They are a decent outfit, they have some good, experienced players – which they proved last year,’ he said.

‘But we are more than capable of matching them on their patch. It is going to be the biggest game so far this season.’