Nottingham Forest are a club that has oozed class over the years but lately, an embarrassing trait has crept in and it must stop.
Shortly after the Reds drew with Everton, Steve Cooper bashed referee John Brooks.
The match official failed to award Forest a free-kick in the build-up to Everton’s second goal and it didn’t sit well.
Cooper isn’t renowned for bashing match officials, with his dad a match official himself back in the day. On this occasion, however, he couldn’t help himself.
The word from the PGMOL was that they couldn’t understand Forest’s gripe. Despite an official complaint, they dismissed their issues, claiming bemusement at the call.
On Friday, the club posted something on Instagram after the game that suggested they were unhappy once again.
Forest felt that Andre Ayew was fouled in the build-up to Alexander Isak’s equalising goal.
He was clipped by Joe Willock and in hindsight, it probably should have been given as a foul by Paul Tierney.
Ultimately, in the context of the decisions he was giving during the game, Tierney should have given it.
Bruno Guimaraes and Kieran Trippier were given similar fouls throughout the first half and the Reds were right to be aggrieved.
However, there are ways of going about things.
Was it Tierney’s fault that Forest couldn’t stop a cross? Was it Brooks’ fault in the Everton game that the Reds lost three headers in their own penalty area before the second goal?
An embarrassing trait has crept in and Nottingham Forest must stop it
Forest must roll their sleeves up and fight. At the moment, they are staring at an immediate return to the Championship and a win is needed quickly.
The constant bemoaning of match officials is growing tiresome. If you asked the other 19 Premier League clubs, they’d also likely have a list of gripes with referees.
Forest have to get their own house in order. Referees are human and they will make mistakes from time to time.
On Friday, Newcastle dominated. VAR helped Forest by disallowing a Magpies goal and the foul on Ayew had minimal bearing on the outcome.
The Instagram post was a little bit petty. It showed a lack of class and Forest don’t want to become akin to Derby County last season when they felt the EFL held a vendetta against them.
Forest’s status as a Premier League club is at stake.
As a result, the Reds needs to focus on becoming better equipped to win football matches and spend less time berating match officials.