Away Days- Nottingham Forest v Watford

Watford v Nottingham ForestWe all love a little bit of the FA Cup. Well, I say everyone, everyone apart from some idiot on the radio on Sunday night who claimed the whole competition should be scrapped. Ok mate. Anyway, I decided to get in on the FA Cup action this weekend by making the trip up to Nottingham to watch Forest play Watford.

Just like last round when I went to Sheffield Wednesday v Fulham, I chose to miss out on one of the so-called glamour ties, at least until the next day. To be honest these games are normally better to go to because even though you do get the odd shock in the cup, for every cupset there are at least three hammerings for lower league opposition. You always get a good game when you see a good Championship side against a good Premier League side. For £10 for an U18, the price was decent enough given that it can be quite a bit more for league games.

Given that it was the FA Cup, and the trip to Nottingham isn’t always the easiest, I was unsure how many Watford fans would turn up. For 4,000 of them to turn up was an impressive show of support from the Hornet’s fans. I arrived in Nottingham about an hour and a half early for the game because I was not getting on a train where I had to change twice and still only got there 45 minutes before the match.

Given winter has decided to arrive about a month later than normal; we decided it was just easier to buy food before the match. Unfortunately, at £3.70, Forest were charging some of the lowest prices for food I have seen this season. I am always amazed by the amount that some clubs are allowed to charge for food, just another of the things I cannot stand about modern football. In all fairness, the burger was actually pretty good and one of the best I’ve had at a football ground for a while.

The first half was pretty low on quality, and also pretty low on chances. The best chance probably came for Forest’s Jamie Ward with the last kick of the half, when he ran through on goal, only to stick it wide with the goal begging. The game was a bit slow and both sides seemed afraid of losing, even though they both appeared desperate to win it in the second half.

The second half started in very similar fashion with it soon becoming a battle of which fans could sing louder. In my opinion it was the Watford fans who won. The strangest decision of the day undoubtedly came from Watford’s new signing Nordin Amrabat. Troy Deeney’s chipped pass looped over him, but it did seem Allan Nyom could have got on the end of it, only for Amrabat to go for a slam dunk, and pick up a deserved yellow card.

The game changed with the introduction of Odion Ighalo, who bought the game, and the fans, to life. It was no surprise when he scored the winner in the 89th minute. It was an instinctive finish, but it was a shocking mistake from Kelvin Wilson to give him the chance. This bought about wild celebrations from the Watford fans and the chant of “Always believe in Ighalo” to the tune of Spandau Ballet’s Gold was very catchy.

That was pretty much it for the game. Despite it being a good away day, there was nothing special I can pick out from the City Ground that stands out from any other away days I’ve had. I must say the stewards weren’t the nicest of people, weren’t very helpful, and seemed pretty happy to throw away fans out whenever they got the chance. I will probably remember the game most for the atmosphere created by the Watford fans, not for anything done by Forest.

Rating out of 10: A good day, a good game, but nothing special. 6/10



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