Nottingham Forest start their third season in League 1 at home to Bournemouth on Saturday. Both sides will be hoping to improve on last seasons’ disappointments. Bournemouth for just avoiding relegation and Forest for just missing out on promotion.
Many fans will point to the game at Dean court in December as the beginning of all that went wrong last term. Forest were cruising ahead of the pack in League 1, until on a cold Tuesday night in Bournemouth Forest lost 2-0 to a below strength Cherries side full of youth team players. The Reds never seemed to recover any real form after this and as we all know the rest is history.
This season looks like being a different ball game atogether for Forest fans, as Calderwood has been busy not only adding some much needed quality, but also getting rid of the dross. Newcomers for the Reds include Neil Lennon from Celtic, Arron Davies and Chris Cohen from Yeovil, Matt Lockwood from the O’s and Kelvin Wilson from Preston.
The start of this season, as with every season, sees the fans return to the City Ground with renewed faith and once again it will be in their thousands. As always that faith is filled more in hope than realism, but it does look as though this time, the club really do mean business in their attempt to climb out of League 1.
Nottingham Forest Team News:
Forest have a host of injury concerns. Nathan Tyson will play no part until September. Arron Davies and Lewis McGugan are doubtful with ankle injuries, Junior Agogo has just about recovered from a pelvic injury and Grant Holt is carrying a groin strain that makes him doubtful. Chris Cohen should be fit, after coming through a reserve game in midweek unscathed and James Perch should be OK after picking up a knock in pre season.
Player to watch: Neil Lennon
Neil Lennon gets the honour this week, if only because he is one of the few who look certain to play. This will be his City Ground debut and fans will be expecting alot from the former Celtic man. He will add some much needed steel and quality to the Reds midfield. Something that was lacking throughout the side last year. His experience and knowledge of the game coul;d be priceless to Forest this time round.
Bournemouth Team News:
The departure of James Hayter had already made the Cherries look a weaker side than last season. But Kevin Bond has made some astute signings, namely Paul Telfer from Celtic an old team mate of Lennons’ and Jo Kuffour, the former Brentford striker. The bad new for the Cherries, is that new signing Telfer has a groin strain and is likely to miss the game. They do go into this game short on numbers, so don’t be too surprised to see additions before the weekend.
Player to watch: Jo Kuffour
Forest fans will remember Kuffour running the Forest defence ragged at the City Ground last year. He bagged 13 goals for the Bees and they were still relegated.
Match Facts & Stats
Forest ran out 3-0 winners towards the end of the last campaign. The corresponding fixture at Dean Court as mentioned earlier, was a resounding 2-0 win to the Cherries.
Forest 1 – 0 Bournemouth
Tuesday August 14, 7.45pm. Chester City. Away. League Cup.