Forest head to Gresty Road on Saturday for the visit to Crewe. Both teams will be desperate for points for different reasons, with Forest hoping to restart their promotion bid and Crewe keen to avoid relegation, currently just outside the relegation zone on goal difference in 20th place.
Crewe have found fame by their impressive youth policy that has seen the likes of David Platt, Geoff Thomas and Neil Lennon wear the Crewe shirt. However the continued develop and sell policy has recently seen the club struggling as they have found it hard to replace recent leavers Dean Ashton, Luke Varney, Billy Jones and David Vaughan. An already relegated Forest earned Crewe a stay of execution when a last day draw with Gillingham at the end of the 2004/05 season meant the Kent side got relegated instead of Crewe. However this only delayed relegation by 12 months as they joined Forest in League One.
In spite of the receipt of all of the large transfer fees there has been very little investment in players and the board of directors were expecting a difficult AGM on Thursday (6th) when fans were expecting to find some answers to the reason for the lack of investment.
At the end of last season Dario Gradi who has been manager at Gresty Road since June 1983 became Technical Director at the club, whilst still initially keeping his first team interests the plan seems to be to gradually allow first team coach Steve Holland gain more control of the team.
The current star is striker Nicky Maynard however he has been plagued by injury this season and has only managed 16 starts. His injury jinx struck again last Saturday when he limped out of the creditable 0-0 draw at the in-form Northampton with a hamstring strain.
Crewe have recently made some loan signings with former Crewe favourite Kenny Lunt rejoining the club where had made 373 appearances before joining Sheffield Wednesday. Also Crewe made a signing that will provide a commentators nightmare as Gary Roberts joined from Ipswich, the nightmare is that Crewe already have a player called Gary Roberts in the side. So I guess we will not hear the chant “There’s only one Gary Roberts” during the game.
Also in the Crewe squad is former Forest cult hero Eugen Bopp who had already hero status with Crewe fans when scoring the Forest goal that saved Crewe from relegation in 2004/05. However Bopp has failed to rediscover the form of his earlier Forest career and was recently told he could leave if he could find a new club.
MOST RECENT GAME
Saturday 01 March 2008
NORTHAMPTON TOWN (0) 0 v CREWE ALEXANDRA (0) 0
Ben Williams; George Abbey, Julien Baudet, Daniel O’Donnell, Patrick Boyle; Kenny Lunt, Gary S Roberts (Ryan Lowe), Gary M Roberts, Steven Schumacher (Michael O’Connor); Nicky Maynard (Tom Pope), Byron Moore
subs not used : Chris McCready, Owain fon Williams
Gary M Roberts is the Crewe owed player
Gary S Roberts is the loan signing from Ipswich
01/03/2008 Northampton Town (A) Drew 0-0
26/02/2008 Carlisle United (H) Lost 1-0
23/02/2008 Leeds United (A) Drew 1-1
12/02/2008 Leyton Orient (A) Won 1-0
09/02/2008 Swansea City (H) Drew 2-2
02/02/2008 Brighton & Hove Albion (A) Lost 3-0
HEAD TO HEAD
at Nottingham Played 8, NFFC 5, Draw 3
at Crewe Played 7, NFFC 4, Crewe 2, Draw 1
at Crewe Played 1, NFFC 1
2007/08 NFFC 2 (Davies, Clingan) Crewe 0 24/11/2007
2006/07 NFFC 0 Crewe 0 05/05/2007
Crewe 1 (Roberts pen) NFFC 4 (Grant Holt, Tyson 3) 09/12/2006
2004/05 Crewe 1 (Sorvel) NFFC 1 (Dobie) 02/04/2005
NFFC 2 (Taylor, King) Crewe 2 (Rivers 2) 14/08/2004
2003/04 NFFC 2 (King 2) Crewe 0 27/03/2004
Crewe 3 (Lunt, Ashton, Jones) NFFC 1 (Harewood) 20/09/2003
2001/02 NFFC 2 (Bopp, Louis-Jean) NFFC 2 (Jack, Hulse) 13/04/2002
Crewe 0 NFFC 3 (David Johnson 2, John) 24/11/2001
2000/01 Crewe 1 (Rivers) NFFC 0 13/03/2001
NFFC 1 (Gary Jones) Crewe 0 26/12/2000
MEN IN CHARGE
Referee : J.Singh (Middlesex)
2007/08 Season Record : 27 Matches, 77 Yellow Cards, 2 Red Cards
Assistant Referees : S.Martin and D.J.Roberts
Fourth Official : S.J.Rushton