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Hello everyone, and welcome back to Garibaldi Reds, a Nottingham Forest podcast brought to you by Nottinghamshire Live. I'm Max Seys, your host. And as Forest had to travel to Brentford and see the Yves and Tony light show, the Reds narrowly lose 3-2 at the GETEC Community Stadium. Nuno's second defeat since taking charge. To discuss the Reds performance, the controversy surrounding Tony and much more, I'm joined by Forest's correspondent as ever, Sarah Clapson. Sarah, hello. How are you? Wormed up since the Black Bull game?


Only just, I think. Just about thawed out, but otherwise doing all right, thank you.


Yes. And someone else that was at the Black Bull game, we were all there in the freezing cold weather. It was Robbie Irnshaw, former Red Stryker. I'm returning to the podcast second time, Robbie. So great to see you. Have you warmed up since that cold night?


No, definitely not. I'm freezing still. What a cold night. So, so cold. But I felt for all the supporters that were there, just traveling and just staying there, extra time and getting through it. So well done to everyone. But listen, I'm freezing. I hate the cold. So I don't want to be in it.


Do you know what, Robbie? You look really cold compared to Ian Hollowey, who you were doing the ITV coverage with. And Ian Hollowey had this big furred coat, didn't he?


Oh, yeah. So it was absolutely... The first real time that I got to actually sit with him, because we were there a few hours before the game, so I actually got to sit with him and just chat and just talk. He was actually telling us about that wooly thing that he had on. So it looked as if it was part of his coat, but he could actually take it off. So in the back, he was taking it off and he's like, Look at this. I got this from a charity shop. And he's absolutely brilliant. He's so good. He's telling me about how him and his wife got that from the charity shop. It's great. It fits on anything. But what a good, good guy. It was just nice to just have him just talk and tell his stories. But good stuff, though.


Just before we touch on the Brentford game, what did you actually make of the Blackball game, Robbie? Nuno made a lot of changes. There was a lot of academy players that came on, and Forest eventually got the job done. But Blackball made it very difficult, didn't they?


Yeah. Do you know what? It was one of those, and I said it on the night that it was a night that you... Because I'm looking at it from, Okay, you got a new manager. He's been in a few weeks. What's happening at the club? What's going on? So I said it that he's actually going to be looking at his players and think, Okay, let me see who is part of this group, see who's going to perform. It's a cold night. It's Blackpool. It's Blackpool away. Replay FA Cup midweek. We've got another game. Who's the one who's going to be accidentally actually ready for this game and want to win this game for this football club as part of the journey going forward. So it was almost like you have those... When you're in school, you have those end of year tests and exams. It was that feeling where it was like, he's going to be looking at his players and think, okay, who can perform? Who can take us forward? Who's going to deliver? Who's going to be ready to go and win in this game, in a game in a game that you should win?


So I think it was a game that it was actually very good. And because of that, I thought Forrest started excellently, just in terms of... Because I was looking at how they're going They're like, actually have their attitude, is going to be ready, are they going to be thinking about the cold, are they going to be worried, a little bit nervous about the game? But they came out flying, pressing real good pressure. And you can see the things that Nuno especially is trying to work on. They're all working in sync. They got the goal. Set pieces, you see they're obviously working at those and obviously delivering as well. So I was happy with how they were and how they were in that first half. And I thought it was a very, very good game. Overall, I thought it was an interesting game. I thought Forest were actually very good throughout. A little bit of pressure in the second half. They could have folded a bit, but I think overall it was a very good game.


Yeah, it was. And Forest progressed to the FA Cup fourth, where I now faced Bristol City on Friday night. Another long trip for you, Sarah. I won't be there, but I was there at Brentford on Saturday. It was cold, but it probably wasn't as cold as Blackpool. What did you make of the Brentford game from the press box, Forest lose three, two? From the start with the whole Tony narrative and everything like that and the media speculation around it, It just didn't seem that it was going to be Forest Day, really, did it?


It felt like he was always going to score. There was such a big build-up, wasn't there? I guess it was inevitable, really, that he was going to do something. What he did was a little bit controversial in the end, but I really thought Forest deserved something from it. I thought they were unlucky not to, really. There was a lot of positives to take, some really good individual performances, I thought. Seeing Danilo back to his best was really encouraging. He's had a bit of a slow start to the season, but two and two now in terms of goals and another really good performance. Hopefully that's the kickstart that he needs because he can be so influential. Chris Wood getting another goal, a really good positive. He's become really key to how Forrest play. And I think a while ago, it looked like a one year being out meant that Forrest urgently needed to get a striker in this month. But Nuno has got the best out of Chris Wood, and that's eased that sense of urgency a little bit. And when Tyro does come back, I'm not sure he'll walk straight into the 11 if Chris Wood keeps up this form, because he's been doing really well, really important again, works so hard.


Even if he doesn't get many chances, he just keeps going and he keeps putting the pressure on defenders and trying to get in the right positions. So I thought that was really encouraging. Nicolas Dominguez, I thought, did really well again, as he did at Blackpool. I thought he was excellent. And Oral Mangala as well. I know there's obviously a lot of speculation about him, and it still remains to be seen what happens to him this month. But I thought he was really good on Saturday. Probably should have scored, but other than that, I thought he had a really good game. Defensively was the area that needed a bit of work, and I guess it was a little bit of a risk to go with two really young, fairly inexperienced centrebacks in Marillo and Amabammi, Delhi. It was a big call. It gave that sense of continuity from Blackpool, but there was an element of risk about it. I think maybe the inexperienced told a little bit at times. Forrest could have done with a leader at the back. Maybe that's what you would want from Gonzalo Montiel or Nuno Tavares as well, being that little bit more experienced, Montiel, particularly, having more experience.


But just defensively, I thought there was a little bit of fragility at times.


Yeah, six goals in six games for Chris Wood and an assist as well. You're right. It seems like he's really picking up form and probably maybe playing to his strengths with the new manager, of course, Nuno. Robbie, what did you make of it? Kind of watching it. I mean, Forest score two goals away from home, and I'm sure you can probably add more light on this, but the players must have been really guttied coming away from London and with absolutely nothing, not even a point, especially given scoring two goals away.


Yeah, exactly. When you do score two goals, and it's not been always happening for Forest, exactly that, scoring a couple of goals away from home. But you know what? I thought overall it was a positive performance, because what I'm trying to see now is you have got a new manager, and What is your performance like? Because I always look at the performance. The performance and what they're trying to do will give you results. And it was one of those that they could have actually pretty... They could have won the game, but it wasn't to be. And the fact that they were that, it was almost that toss of a coin game where it could go either way. I think later on, they'll benefit because I like what they're trying to do because they're aggressive, they're scoring goals, especially from the beginning. To score such an early goal, it means you're pressing the opposition. You're doing very well in that sense. I love that Danilo got another goal as well because he is in those positions and he's there to finish. I like that. We said, with Wood as well. Wood has been on fire. Wood has almost had this release.


And what I like about Forest as well is the reason that Wood is scoring is because there is service, there's good chances created for him. And that's the key. And what I think was a little bit missing earlier in the season was those things, because I was looking at Forest earlier in the season and thinking, they're very much... They attack one end, then they have to run all the way back. It's very, very difficult to do that a season in the Premier League. You're going to lose so many points. So there has to be some control when you go up the pitch. And listen, at the end of the day, you got to create chances for your strikers. And that's what I like that they're doing for Wood. They're creating chances for them, good ones. And as a striker, I've been in those positions. You love the tapping. The reason you love the tapping is because those crosses are coming in, because you've got control in the game that you can put those balls in for your strikers and they're tapping those balls in. And I think that's a big, big difference. But listen, I thought the Brentford game was very, very difficult to go into because everybody's talking about Tony and his comeback, and it's at Brentford.


Brentford is a tricky place to go anyway, but it's a good place to go. And Forest came in and said, Okay, let's play and let's try what we're doing. But there is progress. That's the key thing. There is progress. That's what I'm trying to get at. There is progress in what I'm seeing from this Forest team. The key thing is they're also working together. When they pressure up high, they're going up high together. I think earlier in the season, there were very much big distances, and you could play one or two passes through, and then all of a sudden, the team is at the other end. And I'm seeing slightly less of that. And the attitude is great because in the Blackpool game Wednesday night, in the second half, 86 minute or whatever, three or four players sprinting end-to-end to get back to get a block in. And then in this game as well, the same thing. They're ready to sprint all the way back and really, really good. And what I like is Wood is done very, very good. Danilo is playing very, very well, getting goals. As a midfield player, you want that.


Yates, I thought his energy. I think he gives so much to his teammates. And even when there's been a few changes, it's still very similar. I think that's the key because you're going to have injuries. When it's still very similar application, you got a big chance.


As a fan and watching in the stadium, the whole Tony narrative and this narrative that he's come back, and of course, he was out for eight months with the batting charges. Were you shocked seeing the media big him up as much as he did? Because ultimately, he did break the law in football as a player.


I'm one of those that this cancel culture, it doesn't work with everything, because I think, listen, he's obviously done wrong. He's being punished for it. And because of what it is and how it's been treated by Brentford, by obviously some of the media, It was a case of he's not directly breaking what is, for example, you throw your own games, that type of stuff. Of course, that you've got an actual, I guess, application to the result, things like this. But listen, what's happened has happened. But with him, I thought, Brentford, especially, how they've treated it, I thought it was excellent because what they did is they looked at the situation. They've very much made a decision, they've stuck to what they thought, they've supported him through it as well. And then as a result, he's come back and contributes. And the big thing is, Ivan Tony learns from his mistakes because they are mistakes. Of course, he shouldn't have been doing what he was doing. And he learns from those mistakes. I'm sure he will. And the other thing is, Brentford also now have a top player back with him. But I thought, sometimes Sometimes when you're a fan, as Forest going there, sometimes that's nice.


You almost have this little distraction. That's why I thought I was quite positive that Forest would go there and actually beat them because Brentford have been struggling this year. And I thought, okay, with all the sideshow going on, I think Forest maybe will go and upset them there at Brentford. But listen, it wasn't the case. But at the same time, I didn't have any argument, though, with what happened, because I would have probably done the same with the goals, with Maupé in his goal. I thought it was a legitimate goal because you want to see the game be the game, not VAR, having to control everything. The fact that Tony moved the ball to the side a little bit. I would have probably done the same. Playing for Forest, I would have probably done the same. I probably did do in lots of games. I just didn't go in and it wasn't highlighted. But only because it's part of the game, because you're supposed to shift to what's happening in front of you. So I didn't have any issues with that. I just thought Forest could have done a little bit better as well to win the game.


Do you think that was him being clever, Bobby?


Yeah, absolutely. That's what I mean. That's why I've got no issue with it, because when The football is about the intelligence, too. And that's the key that makes the top players have it. They shift things, they analyze what's happening, they tweak the rules. All managers also the same. They'll tweak the rules a little bit. They'll shift the ball two yards to the left or the right. That's part of the game as well. And that's why I've got no issue with it, because it's always been there. That's no different to 20 years ago, 50 years ago. That's just part of the game. It's in high-level intelligence, but it's just a shame it was against Forest.


Reports came out yesterday afternoon, actually, into the evening that Forest submitted another written complaint to the PGM Alan, Premier League, saying about the rules and whether VAR could have intervened. Sarah, the rules are very complex. Tony says you can move it a yard. Whether that includes moving the phone, because you can see in the video, he picks up and actually moves the the referee's magic foam. Whereas Nuno says it's all displacement. It's a difficult one, isn't it? If that were to happen for Forest, and it was a Forest player doing it, let's say, Gibbs-White took a free kick and he did it, we'd be living it up and enjoying it. But when you're on the opposing side of it, you really, really don't want it, do you at all?


Yeah, it's frustrating. And I can see why Nuno was really annoyed by it. I think he was right in that Forest, and as Robbie mentioned, Forest had to be a bit more switched on to it. The players had to keep an eye on what he was doing. And if they saw it, and it appears they didn't, they needed to raise it with the referee and point out, hang on a minute, look what he's just done. That didn't happen. I still think the wall needed to be set up better, yet you can argue that it was set up for where the free kick was originally supposed to be taken. But when you're defending that situation, you have to be alert to all possibilities. And that includes the person taking the free kick, moving the ball. You have to be switched, John. You have to be looking around and aware of what's happening. And then if that does happen, the wall needed to move to take that into to account. So I think Forrest can be frustrated, and they've got every right to be frustrated, but it's also a little bit on the players to take that on board and be alert and aware to it.


And that's what they didn't quite do. And giving away the free kick in the first place, I think, was a little bit clumsy. But Mangala giving it away, I think he didn't particularly need to in that position. Having been on the receiving end of it last season, seeing what Tony can do. Forrest were well aware, and you can see Ryan Yates telling Matt Turner, Look, he's going to try to get the ball around the wall. Are we in the right place? The onus needed to be on Forrest to be able to defend it then. And what Tony did is so frustrating. But I think Forrest had to be aware and alert to it as well.


I've been in that position and I saw Yates is shouting. I think Turner, he was shouting at an and saying, what's happening? Are we good? Because I've been in that position where normally you do the set pieces, but you will have one person in the wall that is the conductor of everything. He's the communicator to the goalkeeper. Based on what's happening in front of you, the goalkeeper tells that guy, move left, move right, and then he shifts everybody else. So what Yates, because I've been in that position as the conductor of the wall, so to say, what Yates is trying to do is, okay, communicate that goalkeeper, are we good? He's moved the ball. Are we still good? Are we okay? Are we all right? Is this position that we're supposed to be in? And then after that, the goalkeeper says, Yes. And then you're good to go. The free kick gets taken. So the frustration was, Turner didn't switch on to what was happening in front of him. And that lapse of concentration is the difference because he moves the ball. Yates is telling him, Hey, come on. Have a little look. Are we good?


He must have said yes because he turns around and they're good to go and he takes a free kick. But the detail in that is the detail of winning a game or not. A goal goes in and you're obviously just conceded a goal based on literally that little bit of communication and that little bit of intelligence. And that's the key. And because I've been in that position, if I'm Yates, I would have been, Hey, we're moving. I would have moved it and taken the responsibility myself. He's got to trust his goalkeeper. But that little bit there shows you the next level that they need to get to as far as... Because that's the thing that happens is the goalkeeper, the war, what's happening, those are the little details that you lose three, two, or or you're maybe two, one up. That's the difference. So it was a real lapse in concentration, and maybe a lot of people might have missed it, but that's the detail that goes into it.


There's a lot of criticism, Robbie, towards Matt Turner at the moment, and in fact, Vladimir Dimas as well, of course, Forest's second choice keeper, as you like, that was brought in. How difficult is it when a team doesn't have faith in their goalkeeper? I mean, can you ever remember when you were playing, being in a team that really didn't have that faith in a keeper? I know you're at the other end of the pitch, but surely for the defensive line, you have to have that trust in between the defense and the goalkeeper. If you don't have that, then that's where goals will really come from.


It's difficult because the best situation is pure trust from the goalkeeper. He's a communicator. All the fundamentals that are needed from your goalkeeper to the defense. The defense is the to the goalkeeper because you're all working together to not concede goals. So sometimes that's difficult and sometimes that takes a little bit of time. But in the end, that trust is the key, knowing that when they go through, nine times out of 10, or at least most of the time, he's going to save us. The little mistakes that we do of conceding goals, that's not going to happen. So that's what you want to feel inside the game. Listen, of course, that's not happening fully because Forest have also conceded a few goals. But regarding Turner, I like him, actually. I think he's a very, very good goalkeeper. I think at times, just watching, listen, he struggles with his feet, especially. He's made a few mistakes over the course of the season. A few goals directly conceded from some of his passes out. But that's a decision making. The only thing as a good goalkeeper you want to do is you want to eradicate that. And going forward, you don't do that again.


Now, there's been probably one or two too many this season, absolutely. But I like Turner as a goalkeeper. I think there's been moments where he's actually saved shots where they're great saves and they're great saves based on... He helps the team hang on to something, and the team can then go and win a game, for example. So he's also got some great things right as well during the season. But he's a good goal goalkeeper. We'll judge him based on the end of the season and him having a season and say, Okay, where is he at right now? Do we need to go up a level? Do we need to replace him? Or whatever it is, I think, over the course of time. But he's a good goalkeeper.


Sarah, despite all the reports coming out about this net zero spend in January, can you see Forest not going and getting another keeper? They've already spent 20 million plus on on Serna and Blackadimos. So Can you see Forest actually going and getting another keeper? Or do you think we're really going to stick with these two?


No. I mean, the information we were getting last week was that another goalkeeper was not going to be on the shopping list this month. I don't think that will have changed after Saturday because there are other areas that need strengthening and that are more of a priority than getting in a goalkeeper. Having brought in two permanent ones last summer, I think to then go out and get another one in January, you can't keep doing that. Every time A goalkeeper makes a mistake or a few mistakes, you can't say, oh, right, we'll go get another one now. We'll go get another one now. At some point, you have to stick with somebody. And Nuno likes Matt Turner. I think he recognizes As we've said, that with the ball at his feet, he is a bit vulnerable. The way around that is not to give it to his feet, to play out in a different way, to not put him in that situation, to not put him under that pressure. As a shotstopper, As Robbie said, I think he's really good. He's made some really good saves. I actually thought he did all right other than the setting up of the wall on Saturday.


The other two goals, I'm not sure he could have done a great deal about. I think you have to look defensively at those two. I think his mentality is really good as well. Whenever he does make a mistake, he puts it behind him, he forgets about it and he gets on with it. The key is learning from it, making sure that it doesn't happen again or working on those areas and trying improve. But I think Forest have a tight budget this month. They have other areas that need strengthening. Bringing another goalkeeper in, I think, it wouldn't be something they look at if they can avoid it.


Robbie, I wanted to touch on, not really the negatives as such, but maybe defensive problems that Forest seem to be finding themselves in. You look at the Brentford game and Danilo opens the scoring and Then straight down the other end, Tony gets that free kick and scores. Do you often think it's a mentality thing, Robbie, in terms of players, when you score a goal, how difficult it is actually to hold on to that lead? Or is that over talked about in modern day football, about it being a mentality thing? Was it just the case often of another team having that quality and it being quite an end-to-end game?


Well, listen, it's definitely an end-to-end game, but it is a mentality thing. I think that is right because when you're in that position, you've just scored a goal, what happens is there's that just joy and excitement, and you've just got a goal, you're one-nil up. And what happens is that enjoyment gives you a little bit of relaxation. And you lose yourself. You literally do lose your sofa a couple of minutes there while you're celebrating and everything, and everything goes out the window. And Once you go back to kick off, that is then when you're most vulnerable. The reason is because you've just lost yourself a little bit. Your concentration is gone, you're focused on your team just scored a goal. And what you need to do is then just control the game, control the opposition, and it's different ways, whether it's the bit of possession, whether you pressure them a little bit more and steal the ball back and you don't let them get into rhythm and put the ball into into your final third. So it's those little things. And listen, it is mentality because you can control a big, big element of those things.


And that's why people say that, that those things affect whether you go then directly and concede. Because the ones who are really, really vulnerable and completely switch off is there's two or three mistakes that happen. The ball's in your own box, bang, score the goal. And that's what normally happens. Is when they really switch off like that. And whether you can see a silly free kick where it was unavoidable, those things happen. And that's what happens. And it is a mentality thing, and you can do something about it. Sometimes you just got to hold your hands up and say, 'Do you know what? That was just a great, great goal. ' And you'll take that as a player, as a professional, you'll take that and you'll be like, 'Do you know what? That was just brilliant. ' You can handle that. But when the analysis, for example, Monday morning, you go and you watch the video, 'What could we have done better? ' is, I could have tackled him. I could have pressured him here. You could have been across here. That's a silly free kick to concede. And where What could we have done here?


We could have done this. When there's five, six, seven, eight things that lots of people could have done, those are avoidable. That's the difference. And that's why it is a mentality thing, because the sooner you do that inside the game, in the moment, the better you are as a team.


It's really interesting point. And Sarah, do you think that Forest, Nuno comes in to steady the ship in a way, and then you hit with all this FFP charges? Is it a concern, given that Forest probably will need to pick up a lot of points depending on this points deduction, this possible points deduction we keep talking about. Is it a real concern when you're constantly dropping points from winning positions? I'd love to know the start. I don't have it to hand, but we always talked about it during Cooper's tenure, and it still seems to be happening now under a new manager.


The situation that Forrest is in at the minute, every point is going to be really important, particularly because it might get to the end of the season and there's still no clarity. That's the really worrying thing, that Forrest could finish the season, think they're safe, but then the points come afterwards. Hopefully it doesn't get to that. Hopefully it all gets sorted before, because I think that's certainly the best position to be in, to know what you need do. Like Everton did with their first charge, they knew they had that deduction. They went out and they were galvanized by it and it really fired them up more than anything. Obviously, they've got another charge now to deal with. But I think Forest know that they need to pick up results. Generally, I think it's been a positive start to Nuno's tenure. Forest looked more organized. I think they looked good going forward on Saturday. They looked like they were a threat. They It looked like they're going to score goals. It is at the back that they still need to tighten up. But I think he's had an impact already, Nuno. He's worked quickly. He's still got to get his ideas across.


He's still working on that. He's still working on properly getting to know his team and his players. And obviously, he'll hope that there's a few come in this month as well. Not many, but a few to strengthen this squad. It's easy to overlook, but Forest were really under strength on Saturday. They were missing a lot of players, 11 players missing and big players as well. You look at the bench and Nuna had to bring in some of the young players to make it up. To go there and nearly get a result, I think is a huge positive, given the situation they were in and the players they were without. I think they've got to take a lot of encouragement from that. And generally the performances have been good. I mean, it seems like a long time ago now, but the wins against Man United and Newcastle. I I know Saturday was the first Premier League game of the year, but I think there's a lot to be encouraged by. It's just about getting more points on the board. And the forest will go into the upcoming Premier League games after this FA Cup one, hopefully feeling pretty positive, I think.


They should do anyway.


Robbie, just as Sarah touched on there, that's 11 players out, six for AFCON or seven. Forgive me if I'm wrong. Six. And the positives are that Forest are without three key players in their final third, Morgan Gibbs-White, Alanga, and ultimately, Taewo Ohanei up front. Forest score two away from home, Robbie. That's surely a big positive, given that you're without so many key players in that crucial area in the pitch.


Yeah, exactly. Last time I was on here, I was saying about I would like to see Gibbs-White, especially, get more goals. I know he gets a few assists here and there, but I think he's talented player that I would like to see more. Great goal against Man United. Brilliant, brilliant goal. And I think him missing is key because I think he's going to improve even better with Nuno in charge. Elanger, I think he's been really brilliant, just brilliant. I think his energy, the way he's got quality, he's added goals and he can assist. He's just got this extra level of Premier League quality that Forest needs. And listen, Alvani is a quality player. He's a key goal scorer. You've got three players that will be pushing to start when they are fully fit. And still, you've got some big wins over the last few weeks. So that is a real positive for Forest. Real, real positive for Forest. I think the worry, more of anything, is maybe not the players that are coming back. I think for Nuno, especially, it's a new job, new players. He's learning about his players, a few people missing. But I think it's also going to be, regarding this FFP as well, is how can they recoup some money?


Because there's been a lot of signings, so many signings. It's the reason they're in this position in the first place. And I think the key is which players will actually exit the door. Yes, there might be one or two that may be coming. I think they'll probably look at loans. I think the wise thing is to look at loans rather than signings for this window. But the key thing for Forrest over the next couple of weeks is who's going to be going out because they do need to get some money back because they are in danger. And the only way is to look at the situation that they're in is, can they bring some money back in to really help the situation?


Yeah. And heavily linked to believe in the club is Orel Mangala. Robbie, what do you make a Mangala? Because Sara mentions they had a really good performance against Brentford. He's a player that's very creative at time, but there's rumors that he'll be a player that will exit the door. Is that something that Forest will have to do? Will be to sacrifice those? I wouldn't say the first team addition such as Gibbs-White and Alanga, those really key players, but they'll have to ship out those players that might not be playing every game and really have that quality, but it's just one of those things.


What will have to happen is upstairs in the financial meetings, they're going to have to sit down and say, what's the best thing for Nottingham Forest? Not the player, not who's in the squad? And that situation is, what's the best thing for Nottingham Forest? What situation is? Listen, we don't know the exact details. That's the worry is the FFP and the financial rules. The club knows and the finance guys upstairs will know Okay, this is how far off the deadline and the actual figures we're supposed to hit. This is how far off we are, based on what the Premier League charges have said, of course, because maybe Forest is saying, Actually, we are within the actual figures. So this is, I guess, what they'll have to deal with. But at the same time, Forrest have signed a lot of players over the last 18 months. So whichever way And whichever way you look at it, it's too many players. And whichever way you look at it, it's been a lot of outgoings and not enough incomings in finance, as in players going out and you get good money for the club So the best thing for Forrest to look at is what is the best thing for Nottingham Forrest financially?


Is Mangala going out? How much is that going to bring us? Is somebody going to pay a great figure that we have to say yes to And that helps Nottingham Forest. If that's the case, then you sell him. And I think that's how you got to look at it. And that's how I would look at it anyway. I would be, is this a great, great offer? We can't turn it down. It helps Nottingham Forest. Maybe you go and get a quality young player for half the price and you keep the rest for Nottingham Forest. These are the business things that I would look at. But if that's the case, it helps Nottingham Forest, then mangala goes. But ideally, I think he's a quality player. I've really enjoyed since Nuno has come in, I feel like he looks different. He plays different. He looks a bit more confident. He looks a little bit more calm as well, wants the ball. So he is a quality player. There's a reason why people want him, but he's better with Nottingham Forest. But listen, they're going to have to make a big, big decision. If there is that real critical interest, that there is actual offers on the table, they will definitely We certainly have to look at that.


Yeah, for sure. Sarah, I suppose we forget that we're in this January transfer window at the minute, given the state of the whole financial fair play and the charges that Forest possibly face. How can you see this month panning out in terms of off the pitch and signings and whether there will be any and outgoings and everything like that? Or do you really think it will be net zero? Maybe few people will leave the door, but really nobody coming into the football club.


There's not long left of the window. That's the first thing to say. It's a little more than a week to go. So it's going to have to probably be a little bit busier end than maybe the start. There won't be a lot of signings. It's only going to be a few, a few key additions. The focus is really on making sure they're the right ones and that good deals are done. Yet the aim is this net zero or even to make a little bit of a profit. That's the target, really, that Forest end the month having made a little bit more than what they've spent. That's the ideal. If it's less than that, if it's net zero, then I think they'll take that as well. But they ideally want to finish it in profit. So that's going to mean a few players leaving. I think they recognize that the players that would make a lot of money are Murillo and Morgan Gibbs-White. But you don't want to lose those two because that would have a detrimental effect on results on the pitch. So then you're looking at other players that might make a little bit of money or that you could get something for.


Mangala is one because he has been doing really well, because there is interest in him, and because he's at that age where he's still got a good few years left in him, but he's already a really good player. And that's where difficult decisions come in, and particularly at the minute, because with the absences, with the players that are away at Afcon, there isn't a lot of strength in-depth. So it's a really fine line to tread between offloading some players like that and not leaving yourself short. That's a balance that Forrest are really going to have to be quite careful about. There's other areas, if you look at the likes of Ethan Horvath, who are not in the 25-man squad. If an offer comes in for him, Forrest will let him go. He's out of contract in the summer, so they won't get a lot of money for him if it does comes to that. So there's a few players who you can say are likely to leave. And then there's others where it's maybe a little bit dependent on players coming back from injury, when players return from Afcon, and how that fits into the window.


But as I said, time is running out. So it's a case of making sure the deals done are good ones, that the money is spent wisely. Nuno has talked about being really careful and cautious, and he's said, you don't always get what you want. So I think he's aware that what he would like to do, the players for us would like, may not happen if the deals are not right and if it doesn't fit into the spending frame that they want, it's going to be an interesting end to the window for sure. I think we're going to see quite a few exits and certainly more exits than players coming in.


As a player, how difficult I suppose, is the transfer window? You've got new faces coming through the door you've got to work with. You might be possibly leaving as a player or someone's coming in to replace you. How difficult actually is the January window off the pitch for players?


It is difficult because what happens is there's a little bit of players unsettled. For example, you're coming into training every day, you know there's probably five or six players, generally. Five or six players within the squad that are, whether they're unhappy or whether they're happy, and they just want to play football. Or the ones that are happy, they're not even They're thinking about it, or there's offers coming from, and now they're having to think, Okay, well, is the best thing for me to be here? Is the best thing for me to go? Because something that they weren't thinking about is actually on the table now. So sometimes there's all of these different discussions, the players to the manager, discussions of what the manager wants, because maybe the manager is looking at players that maybe can go. I'm sure those discussions happen. So there's players that getting unsettled because the manager said to them, Hey, we have got these offers. I think you should look at it. Sometimes That's the signal of we're okay if you go, and now you feel like, Oh, maybe they don't want me, and maybe I should look at it. But still at the same time, nothing is happening urgently.


So you're still training every day, you're still around the group. You still might be even involved and coming on and playing. So sometimes these situations happen. So it is unsettling in that way for some players. But I think the good thing about Forrest, especially the last couple of weeks, is I don't see too much of that. And with players and their attitude, how they apply themselves, I think you see a nice togetherness about the group as well. You're not really seeing that. Sometimes I look at teams and it's very obvious, and I see, okay, right. You can see the unhappy ones, you can see the disruption. And sometimes it affects the group because going into a game, there's unhappiness within the group. Sometimes it takes away from the environment, the preparation. And sometimes there's a few arguments as well with the coach. The player wants to stay. The player wants him to go. Those things happen. I was not I wasn't too much in the situations where I was in a situation of I was pretty much wanting to go or going to go. I was in a couple of situations where it is January, and for example, when I was at Cardiff the second time, 2012 January transfer window, I was in a situation where I wasn't playing.


And I pretty much said, Listen, I want to go. And I was in a situation where I knew there was one of the teams interested. There was discussions with the club, but it was also finding where I wanted to go. So in that way, it's a little bit disruptive because in the end, players, I think, generally want to sign for a football club and see out their contract to that football club. There's only some things that happen along the way, managers, players, different situations that come along that players then really want to leave us, I think, especially in the January transfer window. But most of the time it's about the minute Minutes played. I think that's the key thing, minutes played. I've been in a couple of situations where I've seen within a dressing room and even when I was at Forest, players in the January transfer window looking to leave and having those discussions. And you see the discussions, and sometimes they're on the training pitch, and you know what the discussion is about. And sometimes, listen, you're professional because they don't affect the squad in a sense as It's a giant, giant negative thing unless it's a big, big bust up.


But most of the time you try and stay professional. You try and say, Yes, I know there's a little bit of uncertainty, this player, that player, but let's get on with our training. Let's get on with our preparation for this game. But it is there. That's the thing. It is there and it is a factor to manage. It gets a little bit difficult for managers, I know for sure, because they're trying to manage the outside stuff and the players that are inside the dressing room to get the results or the preparation for the Saturday game or whatever the game is, and then trying to put that into training. But you have to have all of these difficult conversations going on pretty much daily. And that transfer window in January pretty much brings weekly discussions like this every single week. So it's hard to manage also. But listen, at the end of the day, it's something that is difficult, but it's manageable also if you do it the right way.


I also wanted to get your thoughts, Robbie, on the whole FFP situation. And as a player, and when you You were at Forest, it was probably never easy. Sometimes off the pitch, you had Billy Davis, and then there was doubts over the ownership, and then you had Nigel Dauci, and then Fawas came in, but you'd departed at that time. It always seems like Nottingham Forest are involved in some controversy off the pitch. How as a player does that affect you? Often managers will come out, and Nuno has done a brilliant job, and I'm sure Sarah will shed more light on his press conferences. But he's come out and he said, Look, our job is the football. But ultimately, it must really affect the players on the pitch sometimes, the noise off it.


I think the key thing is the manager himself. I've listened to Mr. Santo and how he's approached. He's approached the last week really trying to push the noise away. And his idea has been, We're going to focus on the football. And he's trying to really distance the players and him from the situation of that FFP, the financial fair play, and what's going to happen, is there deductions? Does that mean relegation? All of those all of that talk coming inside the dress room, and I think he's handled that very, very well. And the last week or so, he's been very, very clear and direct with his management style. I think that's the key, is that you manage the situation based on how much it affects the players. And I think it's not affecting the players too much, to be honest with you, because I think the way he's handling the media side of it and the talk and what's going to happen He's putting a bridge and a door and something to have a block in the way of like, listen, I know what goes on in this situation. If I allow too much to come into the dressing room, it will negatively affect some of the players and what goes on on the pitch.


But he's been very clear and direct to say, Listen, we're here for the football. We're going to concentrate on the training pitch We're going to concentrate on the games. We'll see what happens with that situation. But there's been a clear barrier put in place. That's really, really good management. And I liked that he did that because, listen, at the end of the day, a lot of it, once you go out on the training pitch and once you go out on the pitch, a lot of that goes out the window. You know the situation that you're in and you know, oh, maybe there's a little bit extra because we're playing one of the bottom four or five. But that's going to happen anyway. But you're aware of the situation. Once you go out on the football pitch, that goes out a little bit. You're not thinking about financial fair play when you're taking a corner kick or when you're trying to take a chance. You're not really thinking those things. You're thinking, I want to be effective here. I want to do my job based on what's happening. But I think the key is Mr. Santos saying, let's park that aside.


Let the finance guys, let the ownership, let the people Directly involved with that, start to deal with that more. And let's push it into that area, that Department of the Football Club, and let's really, really get zoned in on the football here. And I think that's a real, real key, really good management with that. We'll see. I think what is a bit of a mess, I said this on Wednesday, is what's going to happen is these rules might have to go until after the end of the season. Well, okay, so what's going to happen inside the season? Maybe, say, for example, as a situation, Forest are five or six points off relegation. They've stayed up. Everything's great, right? Yeah, great. We can start building for next season. Brilliant. I think every Forest fan, if Forest are in the Premier League at the end of the season, we'll be happy, I'll be happy. But in that situation, now maybe the appeals, you've been deducted points, there's an appeal, you're now going to after the end of the season to find out the result, the real, real result of it. That's a bit of a mess. It's not very clear from the Premier League, from the sanctions, the people that are making the decisions.


So it's not very clear with that in the deadlines and when it is, because what it should be is... Listen, It either should be next season or it should be in the season now. And this is the decision, this is when we're going to do it. And weather appeals, the final decision have to be held at least a month before the end of the season. And what your situation is, you're going into the last month of the season and you know exactly the situation that you're in, that everybody else also knows the situation that they're in. And then It's fair play. And keep that fair play. You got the last month of the season, you've been deducted five, six points, whatever it is, or two points, doesn't matter. But you know the situation. Everybody else in the Premier League knows the situations. And go play and let the football do the talking. You get enough points to stay up? Brilliant. Well done to you. You stayed up. You got enough points. You didn't, then you didn't. But at least going into the final part of the season, the last month or so, six weeks, You know that situation.


I think that's a much fairer way to do it rather than we might end up in a situation where going into after the end of the season, we know the relegation, but we don't know really because the Premier League will make other decisions, deduct points after the end of the season. That could be the case. That is a disaster for the Premier League if that happens.


It is. Well said, Robbie. I think you echo the thoughts of me, certainly, and lots of other fans. Sarah, just finally then to wrap up, we enter this end of January, Arsenal coming up in the League, then some other huge Premier League games. You've got Bristol City Friday night. This has been a good start for Nuno. And what I like is that he's given the chance to I think you mentioned him earlier, Andrew Omabaladele, and then Brandon Aguilera is featured on the bench a few times as well. I think there's a lot to be positive about. I went on Twitter on Saturday night on my way back from the game, and I wanted to turn it off instantly because it was very negative and albeit we have to be realistic, and of course, there was defensive errors and certain things that cost Forest the game. But I think this has been a good start to Nuno's time and tenure. And for sure, it's much better in terms of the football and there's much better signs than towards the latter stage of Cooper's end.


Yeah, I think it's been really encouraging. I think there's a lot to be positive about. There's areas to work on for sure. And Nuno is well aware of that. The players are well They're aware of that. I don't think anybody is getting carried away with themselves. Saturday was good despite the result. Not great. It was good. There was a lot to build on, a lot to work on. Nuno has made a difference since he came in. I mentioned it before, but he's got for us more organized. They do look better as a unit. The press was really good on Saturday, I thought. And it's a case of having things to develop and build on. But also he's getting the best out of players like Chris Wood, like Nicolas Dominguez, players that can really make an impact on the pitch. Morgan gives white, Anthony Alanga. He's getting a lot out of them, getting goals out of them, getting assists, getting impacts in games. So I think he's made a really good start. There's still a long way to go. There's still a lot to do. There's still a lot to develop, but he's put building blocks in place.


And that's the main thing, that there's things there to work on, there's things there to improve on. But there's already been a decent points return from the first few games that he's had. And you look at the games coming up and think, well, maybe previously you'd go into them thinking, I'm not sure what's going to happen there. Now, Forest can go into games and think, we've got a chance, got a chance of getting something. And that's been a A huge positive.


Right. I think that does us nicely. And as always, if you've enjoyed this episode, remember to drop us a like and share on YouTube, subscribe and follow across Spotify and Apple podcast. Leave us a review if you've enjoyed it. I'll be back on Wednesday for a special episode, new Nose to Do list as such. And Sarah, you might be back as well for a preview for Bristol City. So we might see you then as well. But as ever, have a great rest of your week and we will see you next time on Gariboldi Red. Take care.