Why Nottingham Forest fans should not despair after Brentford defeat

Nottingham Forest's Hildeberto Pereira

The Reds can take plenty of positives despite losing the game 1-0 at Griffin Park

Nottingham Forest manager Philippe Montanier applauds fans after the gameA new era for Forest has begun under Philippe Montanier

Asking Nottingham Forest fans to be patient would be like lecturing birds about flying. But, despite two decades of longing, patience looks to be all the more important under the tenure of Philippe Montanier.

Hearing the result from Griffin Park last night, you would be forgiven for accepting the sporadic despairing comments that inevitably surface after a defeat against a side the Reds should be beating if they hope to make it out of the Championship.

Ex-Brentford manager Mark Warburton applauds the fans at the end of the matchEx-Brentford manager Mark Warburton

There should be no beating around the bush here; Brentford are a side in transition and one that looked a far cry from the promotion-battling squad assembled by the lauded Mark Warburton, whom they discarded without a second thought.

The Bees were decent opposition, but nothing more. They were a threat from set-pieces, effective especially on their right hand side whilst forward Scott Hogan proved too tricky for Damian Perquis and Matt Mills as he netted the only goal of the game despite two stunning saves from stopper Stephen Henderson.

But for all that Brentford were, Forest were their match and more, putting in a display that at times could easily have seen the travelling side walking away with all three points after a routine away win.

Yet at the moment, the Reds are still to find their rhythm. Indeed, the elements of a side in transition were clearly on show; playing out from the back, slick, faster tempo with Osborn and Pereira taking on their full-backs, but lacking the final ball, that killer instinct that wins you games and earns you points.

Nottingham Forest's Henri Lansbury looks dejected after missing a chance to scoreNottingham Forest's Henri Lansbury didn't have his best game in a Reds shirt

Mistakes were frequent. Henri Lansbury, for one, had a game to forget, pinging balls off the pitch just as frequently as he found a man from five yards. 

But there were many more positives on show. The visitors dominated great swathes of the game, creating enough openings and finding themselves in the right positions in the final third that should have returned goals. Pereira missed a great chance in the early stages of the first half, whilst it was a lapse in concentration that allowed Brentford to push on and nick a goal.

The on-loan flying wing-back then missed an even better chance in the second period, whilst Assombalonga, absent from training this week due to the birth of his daughter, should have grabbed a point at the death.

Whilst missed chances hint at what might have been, Forest fans must take heart from the threat the Reds held going forward.

Nottingham Forest's Hildeberto PereiraNottingham Forest's Hildeberto Pereira

Pereira had an off-day but was a constant thorn on the Bees left flank, linking up superbly with Eric Lichaj, who twice went rampaging beyond his Portuguese teammate only for the final ball to let him down. 

Likewise, Ben Osborn used his pace and quick feet to great effect, frequently stealing a half yard before whipping in a delivery, or cutting inside like he did in the first period, only for the ball to get stuck between his feet at the vital moment.

These are signs of a team trying to do the right thing, but not quite ready to implement it effectively just yet.

Finding that rhythm that wins run-of-the-mill games requires patience. It is something foreign coach Montanier will need to instil into his players and that will inevitably take time. He's still adjusting to English football, as are his staff, and that should not be underestimated.

But the signs are good, and with a bench as strong as they had last night and the expectation of new additions to come by the end of the transfer window, Forest fans can take comfort in that the future under their new coach, for once, might be something worth waiting for.

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