What a time to be a Forest Green Rovers supporter! The club must be absolutely bouncing at the moment.
There is so much positive news coming out of the place. I was golfing last Saturday but got back into the bar as the results came rolling in. 4-0 away from home against your closest contenders for the title is awesome. I don’t think there is any ‘probably’ about it. That has to be the greatest league result in the history of the club. It’s the kind of result that no matter what else happens to the players and staff later on in their careers that game will always be stored in the memory bank.
I tried to watch the game on catch-up on Sunday morning but failed. I did, however, manage to view the extended highlights and they were a joy to watch. It was great to see the players enjoying themselves so much and reaping the rewards of their efforts. They were celebrating in style having earned the right to do so. It was a nice touch that they went to the away support at the end of the match and included them in their celebration.
Another piece of news from the club that cheered me up was the loan signing of Kasey McAteer from Leicester. I had written previously that I was disappointed that it looked like the club was set to do no business during the January window, something that I feel would have sent out the wrong message.
The club have completely turned that around by bringing in Kasey. He’s not a kid, he’s a twenty-year-old Premier League player that is highly rated at one of the top ten clubs in England. He has a future at Leicester but can gain some invaluable experience at Rovers for the rest of the campaign. He is also guaranteed a lot of fun along the way as Rovers continue their charge into League One. A win-win-win for everyone concerned, the player, Leicester City and Forest Green. The Tranmere result takes some topping but I feel that the insight into the plans for the new ground has blown everything that I have ever seen connected to the club totally out of the water. It looks an amazing facility, ahead of its time. To see the diggers and hear about the results of the archaeological search seemed to bring the dream to life. Hats off to the chairman, Dale Vince has had to fight planning at almost every step of the way but the tenacity he has shown is starting to pay dividends.
I love the concept of the ‘Forest Green Family’ with the youth, academy, women and first-team all training at the same ground. I hope that Dale continues as Chairman for decades to come but one thing is for certain, the new site will be a phenomenal legacy. As I was saying, what a time to be a Forest Green Rovers supporter!
In a regular column, iconic former Forest Green manager Frank Gregan has teamed up with Stroud Times to look back on his time at the New Lawn.
Now living in Spain and a published author, the former sergeant major joined Rovers in 1994 – leading his side to back-to-back promotions and Wembley final. Frank transformed the club from non-league minnows, charting the way for what they have gone onto achieve under the late Trevor Horsley’s successor Dale Vince.
Follow Frank on Twitter: @Greegers