McClaren tenure at Forest doomed from the start

It must be a familiar feeling for the former England coach, who was ousted midway through last term at Wolfsburg.

The Englishman even considered resigning not too long ago, amid a perception that he has not been backed in the transfer market the way he hoped.

Five points from six games certainly weren’t what Forest expected when bringing in the former England boss, but perhaps it should have been expected. He has achieved some success at Middlesbrough, but they won the Carling Cup at a time when Blackburn did as well, and not so long after Leicester City had been dominant in the competition. Winning the competition today is far harder. Let’s not forget he beat Sam Allardyce’s Bolton, hardly a difficult opponent, in the final.

True, he had a great Europa League run, that should not be forgotten. But that owed more to his tactical inclination to throw on striker after striker to overturn three goal leads, which helped take them to the final of the competition. But there the run ended with a thumping 4-0 defeat by Sevilla.

And with England, McClaren showed all the skill and wisdom of an injured koala bear as he failed to qualify from a group which, though difficult, was eminently winnable. Croatia were a better side than England at the time, but they were not as vastly superior as the games with England should have suggested. McClaren’s inability to shape the team cohesively was his downfall. A lack of organisation led to the classic English last resort (and often the first) – the long ball.

So when McClaren told East Midlands Today that “we’ll know the ambitions of the club in the next few days,” he was admitting what we all knew. He was not up to the job.

“The club now has a choice, because nobody gets a promotion unless we keep clean sheets,” he continued.

“I’ve more or less said this is what we need. I’ve been patient so far – frustrated behind the scenes but patient.”

McClaren, if he were more like a Roy Hodgson, would probably be able to shrug off the problems, and guide his team to success regardless. Great managers work with the resources they have and make the most of them. Merely average ones require money to implement change.

And Forest don’t have so much money. This in essence, is the problem facing McClaren and Forest, a partnership doomed to failure from its start.