Birtles: O'Driscoll has already grasped the way things must be done at Forest
TO anyone connected with Nottingham Forest, hearing Sean O'Driscoll pledge that they will play proper passing football this season will have been a true 'punch the air' moment.
It is just the way that things should be done at the City Ground. It is the Forest way.
As the great man said, if we were meant to play in the air, God would have put grass on the clouds.
When I was a player, that was how we did things. And it is more than refreshing to hear O'Driscoll say that is how he wants to do things now.
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If he can implement the same ethos as he did at Bournemouth and Doncaster, I for one will be very happy.
And Forest can not only play good, attacking football, but also be a success in the Championship at the same time.
In recent years, Swansea, Norwich, Southampton and Reading have all made the step up into the top flight while adopting a proper purist approach. Even at a lower level, Swindon and Crewe both won promotion while doing things in the right way.
When you look at the Forest squad, virtually every player in there is capable of playing good football.
Andy Reid, Radi Majewski, Lewis McGugan, Chris Cohen, Adlene Guedioura. . . we are talking about some of the best passers of the ball outside the Premier League.
But then, there is another reason why most of the Forest squad are people you would associate with being good footballers – and that is because there are so few defenders.
Danny Collins is an outstanding addition and Greg Halford was a player who was expected to achieve big things in the past. Hopefully now he still can, with Forest.
But another of Cloughie's favourite adages was that you always build from the back when you are putting together a successful side.
So far, the Al Hasawi family have shown good intent with the players they have signed.
And, let's face it, getting deals done at all was a problem in the past, for the Reds.
The fact that they are now identifying players, pursing them and successfully completing deals is a step in the right direction. But O'Driscoll needs to add another two or three defenders before we can get too carried away.
Big things are possible this season. But there is still big work do be done first.
CAN somebody send a memo to a few of our footballers to explain that 'God Save the Queen' is the BRITISH national anthem.
Yes, I know a few of the English lads had a problem when it came to being able to more than mumble the words at the Euros a few months ago.
And it should perhaps not be a surprise that the likes of Ryan Giggs and Craig Bellamy, both proud Welshmen, were hardly enthusiastic about bellowing out a tune that is more associated with England.
But, on this occasion, it wasn't. It was about Britain.
And, if you take any pride in being involved in the Olympics, then you should puff out your chest and put a bit of effort into showing it.
But then, at least Giggs and Bellamy had the decency to turn up. You can't say the same about Gareth Bale.
A few weeks ago, he was injured and unable to be involved in team GB. Yet, before a ball has even been kicked, he is suddenly able to feature in a friendly game for Spurs?
Let's not beat around the bush; if he can play for them, he can play for the GB team.
And I just can't fathom for the life of me why he wouldn't want to. It is the opportunity of a lifetime. I'd have tried to play, given the opportunity, even if I did have an injury.
Because nobody of his generation will ever get the chance to play for a GB football team on home soil ever again.
WOULDN'T it just be brilliant if Spurs were able to stick Luca Modric in their reserve side for the next four years; to leave him to rot in solitude.
Unfortunately, if they did, they would be writing off the £25m or £30m they are likely to pick up, now that he has wriggled his way closer to a move away from White Hart Lane, by refusing to go on their pre-season tour.
But, instead of leaving club's powerless, we should be looking at ways to properly punish players. Hit them where it hurts. Let's establish a situation where they can be fined three months wages without having to have a row with the PFA.