Football: Forest worried by yobs and strikers
Glenn Moore on tonight's challenge to the last British club left in Europe
Olympique Lyonnais, their opponents in tonight's Uefa Cup third round second leg, are expected to flout the regulations of the governing body of European football and sell tickets on the day of the match. Although this happened without problems in both Forest's previous European ties, in Malmo and Auxerre, Forest are aware that the risk increases in line with their profile.
"I am concerned," said Frank Clark, the Forest manager. "There might be a few national yobbos who decide to have a day trip and cause a bit of mayhem.
"The club has done everything we can. We have taken names and addresses for each of the 1,000 tickets we have sold. But though Uefa would take that into account if anything happened, the stigma of trouble would still reflect badly upon the club. It certainly would not do English football any good."
Fortunately, the police are yet to be dragged into the wave of strikes which are slowly paralysing France - although they may join in if they continue. Apart from the possibility of the dispute spreading to the airports - and preventing their post-match return tonight - Forest are more worried about their four strikers than France's 8,000.
With Bryan Roy injured, Kevin Campbell ill and Andrea Silenzi still struggling to find form, they are hoping Jason Lee will be fit enough to lead the attack. Lee has missed three games, including the first leg which Forest won 1-0, with a thigh injury. "He has a chance," said Clark last night, "it depends how he reacts to training."
Forest's progress has been characterised by defensive solidity - they have conceded two goals in five games - but Clark emphasised: "We are looking to score. If we get one they will have to score three and I cannot see them doing that."
Clark will not reveal his hand, but Silenzi is only likely to play if Lee is unfit. Either Paul McGregor, who scored the first-leg winner, or Stephen Howe (who created it) may then be entrusted with the linking role. Neither has made half a dozen full appearances, but Clark said he was confident they could handle the occasion.
The French will be without Florent Laville, who is suspended after being dismissed at the City Ground. Eric Assadourian is expected to return to partner the impressive youngster Florian Maurice in attack.
Another tight match is envisaged. "I would like us to be entertaining and expansive, but we will we do whatever is required," Clark added. "The next round is not until March, so if we get through we can put it on the back burner for a few months knowing it is something to look forward to."
If they do not, the European competitions will be devoid of British interest until August...
Latest in Sport
Chelsea vs Manchester United: Jose Mourinho dismisses United injury worries, saying 'they have an amazing squad'
Aaron Hernandez: American Football in the dock as NFL star player's murderous double life is revealed
Chelsea vs Manchester United: Why Blues are the least popular team in the league
Arsene Wenger compares talk of Jurgen Klopp replacing him at Arsenal to a 'circus'
Chelsea vs Manchester United combined XI: Thibaut Courtois or David De Gea? Juan Mata or Willian? Who makes our team?
- 1 BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
- 2 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 3 18th century sex toy found in 'toilet of sword fighting school' in Poland
- 4 'I wish my teacher knew...': Young students share their 'heartbreaking' worries in notes
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
Russian warships in English Channel 'to conduct anti-aircraft and anti-submarine military drills'
£30000 - £40000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Front-End UI Application ...
£18000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...
£27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Domestic Service Only Engineers are requ...
£23600 - £27500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Employability Service withi...