A wonderful Tiago Silva freekick, a dramatic red card and a late, lung busting Yuri Ribeiro run tracking back to fulfil his defensive duties – that is how the events of Forest’s 1-0 win over Bristol City unfolded.
Why is that relevant, you ask?
It was Wednesday 1st July and that was the last time Forest took all three points from a league game.
Since then Forest have played six Championship matches, with zero wins.
Now the question amongst all Forest fans is whether Evangelos Marinakis should stick by the man, whom he gave a second chance over the summer, or pull the trigger and look for his fifth permanent manager of his reign as owner.
Lamouchi was heavily backed this summer. A major reshuffle of his backroom staff was just the start of the drastic changes. So far, eight new signings have arrived at the City Ground. Players like Lyle Taylor, Jack Colback, Luke Freeman and Tyler Blackett we’re all identified by Lamouchi and the club as players in possession of one key, desired trait: plenty of top-level, Championship experience.
According to David Ornstein, of The Athletic, time is running out for the Frenchman as the patience of Forest’s Greek owner wears thin.
The Reds were convincingly beaten by QPR on Saturday afternoon. Leading man Lewis Grabban wasted a hatful of chances, as the Reds failed to muster a single shot on target.
It was a display that many Forest fans had hoped was one that the team had left behind them, in their disappointing run in at the end of last season. The performance follows another poor showing in the Carabao Cup, a week prior, where the Reds were second best all afternoon.
So, with the way Forest have started this season and considering the way 2019/20 ended, should the Forest hierarchy stick or twist with Sabri Lamouchi?
It is a call I wouldn’t like to make, for the most part Lamouchi was one of the most popular men in Nottingham last season. But the former France international seems unwilling to change his ways, Forest fans crave more attractive, attacking football – a game plan that sees the Reds win in style. In the last campaign, the style of football and tactics employed by Lamouchi was often overlooked because he was getting results.
The wins have stopped.
The wins have stopped but nothing else has changed. Forest are still playing with considerably less of the ball and failing to mount much attacking threat.
Perhaps there is a hangover amongst the whole squad following last season’s failings. What happened was always going to take its toll. It’s up to Lamouchi to eradicate the lingering stench of what took place at the end of last season. If he can’t do that Forest will struggle. They have to squad, on paper, to comfortably push for the playoffs. Mentally is where they could struggle.
If Sabri Lamouchi can’t get his players to look forward, rather than back, a change would have to happen.
The Frenchman made history by starting a second season in charge but perhaps there was a degree of naivety in that decision. Perhaps Lamouchi isn’t able to steer the Forest ship clear of the iceberg in its path.
Lamouchi will almost certainly be given the next few games to prove he’s capable of getting his Forest side back on track. But there can’t be any hiding from the facts, a serious turnaround of results is needed if the Frenchman is to remain in the City Ground hotseat.
*Article provided by Joe Freeman (Nottingham Forest Correspondent).
*Main image @NFFC Sabri Lamouchi is now under more pressure than ever before.