Clark misses crowd's point


Nottingham Forest 1 Southampton 0

It used to be Arsenal who were masters of the 1-0 win but nowadays maybe Forest should be so acclaimed. This was their sixth such scoreline this season, a third in a row at the City Ground. They even stand accused of being boring, or so their manager thinks.

"I can understand the crowd getting frustrated," Frank Clark said. "You pundits keep telling us we have to play a more patient, passing game to match the Continentals but one of the problems in that is educating English supporters.

"They want the ball going forward quickly - that's what they are used to - but we've got to ignore them in that respect.

"Southampton made life very difficult for us by getting 10 men behind the ball. But we were patient, kept passing and kept probing. It was not a free-flowing, crowd-pleasing performance but in the context of a difficult game it was excellent."

An honest assessment but he was missing the point. It is not so much the method as the end result that is getting the crowd down, the fact that Forest have only to score once, it appears, to be collectively seized by goal-scorer's block. In the last 13 games they have only once reached two. Supporters do not tire of winning 1-0 but they can do without the anxiety it involves. Ask an Arsenal fan.

Kevin Campbell would be quite at home, if someone at Forest could shield his shortcomings the way Ian Wright did at Highbury. Clark, seeking to defend a striker with two goals in 13 starts, said it was "important to have a front player to hold the ball up" but pounds 2.5m is a lot for a foil. Robert Rosario, languishing in the reserves, could do the job just as well.

As if to emphasise this point, it was a defender, Colin Cooper, who broke the deadlock, capping a redoubtable display in his primary role by stealing Campbell's thunder for good measure. Cooper popped up in Southampton's box to head home Bryan Roy's cross a minute before half-time.

But if Forest are worried about Campbell, their concerns are nothing next to Southampton's over Matthew Le Tissier. His loss of form has become a chronic malaise. His manager suspects rejection by England is at the root of it all.

"You'd have to ask a pyschologist about that," Le Tissier said, declining to discuss the theory. In Dave Merrington's view, however, there would be no need.

"If I were a class player and did not get selected it would affect me," Merrington said, "and I'm sure it has affected him."

Goal: Cooper (44) 1-0.

Nottingham Forest (4-4-2): Crossley; Lyttle, Cooper, Chettle, Pearce; Stone, Gemmill, Bart-Williams, Woan; Campbell (Lee, 77), Roy. Substitutes not used: Phillips, McGregor.

Southampton (4-4-1-1): Beasant; Dodd, Neilson, Monkou, Charlton; Bennett (McDonald, 58), Magilton, Venison, Maddison (Watson, 68); Le Tissier; Shipperley. Substitute not used: Grobbelaar (gk).

Referee: S Lodge (Barnsley).

Bookings: Forest: Pearce; Southampton: Dodd, Monkou.

Man of the match: Cooper. Attendance: 23,321.

Arts and Entertainment
Lena Dunham
booksLena Dunham's memoirs - written at the age of 28 - are honest to the point of making you squirm
Arts and Entertainment
A bit rich: Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey
tvDownton Abbey review: It's six months since we last caught up with the Crawley clan
Frank Lampard and his non-celebration
premier leagueManchester City vs Chelsea match report from the Etihad Stadium
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
techNew app offers 'PG alternative' to dating services like Tinder
Jacqueline Bisset has claimed that young women today are obsessed with being 'hot', rather than 'charming', 'romantic' or 'beautiful'
Arts and Entertainment
Jake Quickenden sings his heart out in his second audition
tvX Factor: How did the Jakes - and Charlie Martinez - fare?
premier league
Arts and Entertainment
'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
tvOnly remaining original cast-member to leave crime series
Mario Balotelli celebrates his first Liverpool goal
premier leagueLiverpool striker expressed his opinion about the 5-3 thriller with Leicester - then this happened
Britain's shadow chancellor Ed Balls (L) challenges reporter Rob Merrick for the ball during the Labour Party versus the media soccer match,
peopleReporter left bleeding after tackle from shadow Chancellor in annual political football match
Arts and Entertainment
Female fans want more explicit male sex in Game of Thrones, George R R Martin says
tvSpoiler warning: Star of George RR Martin's hit series says viewers have 'not seen the last' of him/her
Plenty to ponder: Amir Khan has had repeated problems with US immigration because of his Muslim faith and now American television may shun him
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Head of Marketing and Communications - London - up to £80,000

£70000 - £80000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Group Head of Marketing and Communic...

Nursery Nurse

Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: Level 3 Nursery Nurse required for ...

Nursery Nurse

Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: L3 Nursery Nurses urgently required...

SEN Teaching Assistant

Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: We have a number of schools based S...

Day In a Page

A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments