The Vital Forest Fan Interview: Hodgey78
Q - How long have you been following Forest and what was your first game?
Been following Forest for 27 years now from 1985 onwards. First match I went to was a friendly against Dynamo Moscow and if I remember rightly Forest won 2-0. Dad used to get tickets from a man who used to clean the players boots, Brian Clough used to give him 4 tickets and he and his wife would give 2 to me and Dad.
Q - What are your most memorable moments as a Forest fan? Good and Bad.
Most memorable moment was The 4-0 FA Cup semi final win against West Ham. Did not get to the game but remember being sat watching it at home with Dad waving my scarf above my head. Worse moment was the relegation from the newly formed Premier League the year Brian Clough left the club, the last home game to Sheff Utd when we lost 2-0 was pure heart breaking.
Q - Since you have been following Forest, what would your best starting eleven be? And who is your all time favourite player
Subs:- Crossley, Fairclough, Bohinen, Van Hooijdonk, Roy. Favourite Player:-Brian Rice of course.
Q - In your opinion, what is the best goal you have seen Forest score?
It's hard, so many to choose from but Collymore's goal against Man Utd at home in the 1-1 draw was awesome. The way he left Pallister for dead before hammering the ball past a stranded Peter Schmeichel.
Q - Best and worst away ground visited?
Would not say it was the best ground, but love going to Blackpool. The worst for me has to be Selhurst Park, when Wimbledon were there.
Q- Which player(s) would you like to see us sign this summer (realistically)?
I would love to see Pep back in a Forest shirt. A class act.
Q - All seater stadia. Good thing, or a bad thing?
Safety wise a good thing. Atmosphere wise a bad thing. I miss the days of the old Trent End and the atmosphere it used to bring. The English Authorities need to look how things are done in Germany where standing is still part of their game and working well in relation to crowd numbers and ticket prices.
Q - What are your thoughts on how Forest did last season and how did it compare to your expectations?
I was gutted when Billy was sacked and if the board had backed him the way they did McClaren with regards to wages etc, then I think we would have been up there. Saying that I was prepared to Give McClaren a chance and did honestly believe we would be fighting at the higher end of the table, how wrong was I. The past season could go down as one of the worst I've seen. Things off the pitch were as bad as things on them, lets be honest we were lucky to survive.
Q - What are your expectations for next season in the Championship/Where will we finish?
Expectations for next season are currently low, we have 16/18 pros on the books. Looks like we only have one senior defender at the club in Gunter but looks like he could be on his way. If we stay up its a job well done but its not looking good. If the proposed takeover rumours turn out to be true then we can start looking at promotion (maybe) but this is Forest and nothing is simple. No takeover I would be happy with 21st place. Takeover happens you never know top 6 would be nice.
Q - With the introduction of Financial Fair Play coming soon, do you think NFFC should spend their way to promotion, or adopt a more frugal approach in trying to achieve it?
Spend is the obvious option, but look where it got Leicester last season. The balance needs to be right, money does need to be spent. But we also need to look after our own and start giving the likes of Freeman and Lascelles chances in the match day squad, otherwise the academy is a waste of time.
Q - Name a former Forest player you were most disappointed to see sign for another club?
The one that hit me the most was when Collymore left, he was by far the best player I have seen in a Forest shirt. He had everything to his game and under the right guidance would no doubt have become one of England's greatest strikers. He left us after we had made Europe and he and Bryan Roy were a force to be reckoned with, gutted we only saw him for two seasons.
Q - What's your opinion on Steve Cotterill and will he bring success to the club.
I'm split 50/50 on Cotterill in a way he had his hands tied but he knew that when he agreed to come. I can't fault the players he brought in they all did well and helped us keep our place in the Championship. I edge towards the side of give him a chance, can he bring success? Only time will tell.
Q -New stadium, or renovate the City Ground?
Renovate for me. Some of the days and nights along the Trent have been great and I don't think I would get the same buzz watching Forest in a new ground.
Q - If you could give one piece of advice to the eventual new owners of NFFC, what would it be?
Listen and talk to the fans. These people are the past, current and future of the club and just want to know what is happening, whether it be good or bad news.
Q - Where do you sit/stand at the City Ground?
Don't get to many games these days as I live away from Nottingham now and can't afford the travel costs, but was a season ticket holder in the Trent End when I lived in Nottingham.
Q - Name the celebrity you would most like to meet.
Never really thought about it, but I guess Keith Lemon would be a laugh.
Many thanks to Hodgey78 for taking the time out to answer the questions. If you would like to take part in the Vital Forest Fan Interviews, then you can find a copy of the questions here. Just email your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will publish them on the front page.