Now is not the time for pointing of fingers at Nottingham Forest, but there are important lessons to take from a 1-0 defeat to Cardiff – with Lewis Grabban involved in at least one of them.

You will be aware by now that the Reds fired in over 30 shots against the Bluebirds on Saturday – 32, to be precise.

None of those found the back of the net.

The radar, certainly in an attacking sense, was certainly off for Sabri Lamouchi’s side.

With the mist rolling in from the Trent, Forest rather lost their way in the foggy haze.

It was not for a lack of trying.

The Reds spent much of a 90-minute outing against Cardiff knocking on the door, they just could not prise it open.

You can pick as many holes in those failings as you see fit.

Various excuses can be offered as to why Forest drew a blank.

Poor finishing, bad luck, opponents that are proving to be something of a bogey side, added expectation.

Take your pick.


Original Image: Nottingham Forest/Graphic Design: Beth Davenport

It should, however, be noted that the Reds did not go down their most proven route to goal as often as you would expect.

Any game which sees Lamouchi’s side take control in the final third is likely to see Grabban figure prominently.

He did see plenty of the ball on Saturday.

Once again, his hold up play and willingness to bring others into the game is to be applauded.

Forest, though, need him to be providing the finishing touch.

His should be the last word, not the first, second or third in a rather elaborate speech.

It has been on eight occasions so far this season.

Against the likes of Leeds, Fulham and Derby, Grabban has been in the right place at the right time.

Forest could not find him in those positions against Cardiff.

There were plenty of guilty parties as the Reds got wayward, but No.7 was not one of them.

Of the four efforts he managed to get away, three were blocked at source.

So only one attempt that actually troubled the target from the most potent weapon on Forest’s books.

Including blocked attempts, Sammy Ameobi fired in five, Matty Cash and Joe Lolley four, while Joao Carvalho, Jack Robinson and Ben Watson all tried their luck with three.

Rafa Mir and Alfa Semedo stepped off the bench to have two shots apiece, while Joe Worrall and Tiago Silva managed one effort each.


Only Ameobi and Cash managed to hit the target – two attempts from the overall tally of 32.

Better is expected and demanded from all concerned.

Nobody needs reminding of that, from the dugout to the stands.

Forest do, however, need to come up with an answer.

In an ongoing bid for a top-six finish, points cannot be allowed to slip the net unnecessarily.

The Reds did enough to win multiple games against Cardiff, never mind snatch a solitary point from one.

If similar issues are to be avoided in the future, then Grabban needs to take the lead.

He revels in that responsibility and has nothing to prove when it comes to the art of goalscoring.

Get him the ball and let him do the rest.

End product may not be delivered immediately, but it is fair to say that he will not need 30-odd attempts to get things right.

Feed the Grabs and he will score!

Have something to tell us about this article?