Reds keeper still to convince fans
BEST OF THE WEEKLY FOREST WEBCHAT
HERE are some of the fans’ questions and the answers provided by the Post’s Forest writer Paul Taylor in his weekly webchat.
Question: Good afternoon, Tails, do you think we are likely to see the big greek panos play anytime soon?
Answer: He did arrive at Forest with some decent pedigree, having played at the highest level for Olympiacos...
Pana Tachtsidis is a player with a decent CV behind him.
But, as we have seen a few times in the past, there is clearly a big difference between flourishing in Greek football and being able to make yourself a success in the Championship.
They are two very different styles of football.
It is too soon to write him off just yet but if we are completely honest, he obviously hasn’t done enough so far to persuade Aitor Karanka that he deserves a first team chance.
Will he want to seek out a new club himself, in order to secure more regular football?
Or are both he and Forest ready to persevere, for a little while longer, to see if he can make the grade still?
Question: I’m very surprised about the valuation of Ryan Yates. He was dominant at Notts County and then played very well in League 1. What do you think, and is the 500k heavily underwritten by clauses around future payments?
Answer: It is very likely that Ryan Yates will leave Nottingham Forest in January.
But still get the feeling it is very much more likely to be on loan, rather than on a permanent basis.
Forest do not have to rush into selling him, they would be far better off sending him out to play regular football somewhere - and seeing how he does.
His value will only increase, as he gains more experience.
And he does need to build his experience. He very much needs to be playing regular football at this stage in his career.
He remains a bright prospect; a young man with lots of potential.
But the only way he will grow and learn is through minutes on the pitch.
In all honesty, £500k for a player with limited experience at the lower levels of the game would not be a bad price - as long as there were significant future add-ons included, most notably a significant sell-on clause.
That is where the big money would be made, if Forest did opt to sell.
If he reaches the level he is capable of, Forest would need to cover themselves for that.
But, as we said at the start, think it is more likely that they would prefer to send him out on loan for now.
Question: Keeper is very poor and me and you both know it, you’re just too scared to offend anyone at the club.
As for his cleans sheets, that’s down to the solid defence.
Answer: Firstly, nobody is saying that Costel Pantilimon is the new Peter Shilton. He is not that.
What he is, is a decent Championship keeper. No more, no less.
But what is surprising is the level of flak he has taken in recent weeks.
People have used words like “garbage”, “liability” and others that we cannot repeat here to describe him.
But we are talking about a player who has kept the second-most clean sheets in the division. If not for the Roofe handball, he would have kept clean sheets in half of his 20 games so far this season. Half.
Forest have conceded the third-fewest goals in the Championship. He alone is not responsible for that. It is a team effort.
But many people seem to argue that this record is despite him, not at least partly because of him.
And that, frankly, is just nonsense. As for the accusation that we are scared to criticise because we are scared to upset people... come on.
The reason we’ve not singled out Pantilimon for criticism is because his contribution so far has been solid, if unspectacular.
He could be better... but Forest have had far, far worse players between the posts than him. Question: What’s the story with Karanka’s sadness? Is it because they’re selling Lolley? Are the Greeks picking the team? Answer: From the conversations I’ve had over the last few days, it does not feel as though there is anything to be concerned about when it comes to the future of Aitor Karanka.
After his interview post-ipswich, the club were briefing that it was a personal issue that had influenced Karanka’s mood,
rather than a football matter.
But what is also clear is that, whatever it was, he is over it now.
He was back to his usual happy self yesterday.
Question: Will Fox be back for derby? Answer: Karanka suggested yesterday that both Danny Fox and Michael Dawson have a chance of returning to face Derby but get the feeling that “chance” is the right word.
Fox has been back in training a few times but has suffered pain in his foot that has hampered his progress.
Which is why Forest have been cautious about putting a precise time frame on his return.
They just need to wait for his foot to calm down.
Dawson’s injury is one that looked as though it might be bad, but has since been - thankfully - viewed as less serious.
It is still a hamstring problem, which you cannot gamble with.
But it sounds as though he has chance of being back for Derby.
If they could get just one of them back, it would be a major boost, wouldn’t it?
Question: Surely Jack Robinson is much too short for centre of defence. Tachsidis is taller than most of the others, as is Ryan Yates. Why not go for a bit of height?
Answer: We asked Karanka about this in some depth yesterday...
And the key points, when it comes to his point of view on this, are:
He prefers to play with senior players, who have trained regularly with the first team, have Championship experience and do not need any bedding into the side, rather than to promote from the under-23 or under-18 side.
He does believe that both Yacob and Watson could do a job in the centre of defence, if required. You can certainly appreciate that where Yacob is concerned.
He knows that Robinson can do a good job there, having played there all season for QPR last year.
Not sure that Robinson is “too short” to play there.
He is one of those players who has two positions in which he is a natural.
He is equally comfortable playing in the centre, as he is on the left.
Playing Tachtsidis or Yates there, just because they are tall, might be a bit of a stretch.
But in the case of Robinson, he could slot in without the need for any significant retraining or preparation. He knows the role.
Question: I’m intrigued to know why you’re always so positive about Osborn at left back. Answer: He is not the next Stuart Pearce but, for a few matches, he is capable of doing a job there and doing it well.
For whatever reason, we got to a point where every single mistake; every single minor error that Osborn made, would be stored away by some, for future use.
Osborn could do five positive things in a spell of a game and make one minor slip – and it is the slip that everyone remembers.
Jack Robinson looks set to fill in at centre-half today
Costel Pantilimon still divides opinion despite the Reds’ impressive defensive record this season