Nottingham Forest Greatest XI v Leicester City Greatest XI: Who Wins?

It's F.A. Cup weekend and one of the most exciting ties has to be the East Midlands derby between Nottingham Forest and Leicester City - but who wins when we compare their Greatest Ever sides?
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It's F.A. Cup weekend and one of the most exciting ties has to be the East Midlands derby between Nottingham Forest and Leicester City - but who wins when we compare their Greatest Ever sides?


It's F.A. Cup weekend and one of the most exciting ties has to be the East Midlands derby between Nottingham Forest and Leicester City -  but who wins when we compare their Greatest Ever sides?

Nottingham Forest Greatest XI by David Hart

GK: Peter Shilton

The foundation of any great side is a rock between the sticks, and Shilton is undoubtedly Forest’s Number 1. Over a 5 year spell and 202 apps at the City Ground Shilton amassed a wealth of trophies including a league title alongside well-documented back-to-back European cup wins. He also won PFA player of the year in 1978 after conceding only 18 goals in 37 league games. 10/10

LB: Stuart Pearce

The most commanding captain and absolute animal of a defender I’ve ever had the opportunity to witness. Stuart Pearce affectionately nicknamed ‘psycho’ was signed from Coventry for £300,000 – he set the standard of what it was to be a leader taking hold of the armband for the majority of his 12 year stay on Trent side. Racking up a total of 401 appearances and scoring an impressive total of 63 goals.9/10

CB: Des Walker

Arguably one of the most talented English defenders ever, Des Walker started his career at Nottingham Forest playing his first game at the tender age of 18. He went onto fix his place as a rock in the Forest back four and helped to win back-to-back league cups in 1989 and 1990 as well as earning a call up to the national side from Bobby Robson, all in his first seven-year spell at the club. After spells at Sampdoria and Sheffield Wednesday, Walker returned to the City Ground under manager Paul Hart, finally leaving the club at the age of 38 after an additional 57 appearances took his total to 354 for the club. A loyal servent to the club, he will forever be remembered under the chant “you’ll never beat Des Walker.” 8/10

CB: Wes Morgan

A controversial choice sure, but the want to include a player from our current crop meant Big Wes was the only rational choice if not purely for his untameable passion alone. Nottingham born and bred, Wes is our current longest serving player with more than 340 appearances to his name. Although having a shaky start to his first team career, under the initial guidance of Des Walker – Wes has gone on to cement partnerships with Michael Dawson, Kelvin Wilson and Luke Chambers, providing a solid base to our defence over the last few years. 6/10

RB: Viv Anderson

Another Nottingham born player to makes the list is Viv Anderson, who broke into the Forest team in 1974 and went onto to become a staple in Brian Clough’s European cup winning side. His form for Forest earned him a call up to the national squad, where he became the first black player to represent England. After a 10-year stay at Forest and 6 trophies to his name, Anderson moved onto Arsenal and then Manchester United. 8/10

LW: John Robertson

Another of Cloughs famous European cup winning side (there’s obviously going to be a lot.) Scottish born Robertson was instantly written in Forest folklore after scoring the only goal in a 1-0 European cup winning victory over Hamburg in 1980. He also provided the golden cross for million pound Trevor Francis to head home in the same competition the year before. Over a stunning total of 396 apps in Garibaldi, Robertson also managed to net 61 goals. 10/10

CM: John McGovern

On the list of players to appear for both Forest and Derby, John McGovern rates highly among the best. A pupil at the school of Clough, McGovern spent most of his career under playing under old big ‘ead. Lining up as a solid contender for greatest captain alongside Pearce for his leadership during the most decorated years of Forest’s history. 10/10

CM:  Roy Keane

Better known for bossing the midfield at Manchester United, one of the greatest players in Premier League history originally cut his teeth at Forest under the watchful eye of Clough. Joining the side in 1990 and working his way up through the reserves, Keane became a key fixture in the first team a year later. Known for his battling performances, Keane gained a lot of attention in a struggling Forest side. He went onto negotiate a relegation release cause in his contract that would eventually see him leave in 1993 for The Theatre of Dreams. 8/10

RW: Steve Stone

Possibly the unluckiest player ever, Steve Stone suffered 3 leg breaks throughout his career – however this didn’t stop him being a cracking winger and helping Forest to a 3rd place finish in the 94/95 Premier League season. One of my favourite players from my early years watching Forest, Stone was a creative wide player, something that we lack dearly these days. After a total of 229 apps, with 23 goals and an England call up under his belt, he broke the hearts of the Forest faithful and moved to Aston Villa after our relegation in 1999. 8/10

ST: Stan Collymore

Without a doubt, one of the greatest naturally gifted strikers that I’ve ever seen -Newly appointed Frank Clarke signed Stan Collymore in 1993 and he hit the ground running. His superb form in front of goal helped take us back up to the Premier League following relegation at the sad end of Clough’s 18-year tenure. Collymore went on to flourish in his first Premier league season, scoring 22 goals most notably his opener in a 2-1 victory over Manchester United at Old Trafford. He went onto to score 41 goals in 68 games at the City Ground before leaving for Liverpool in 1995.9/10

ST: Nigel Clough

Although ironically now the manager of our main rivals -Nigel Clough is one of the most successful Forest strikers ever, scoring a staggering 101 goals over a total of 311 appearances. Controversially brought into the side under the management of his father, Clough took the pressure well, winning two league cups on the trot. He scored two goals in the 1989 final helping us overturn Luton Town 3-2.  8/10

Manager: Brian Clough

The gaffer could be no other than the greatest manager England never had – the late great Cloughie. Undeniably the one of the greatest managers football has ever seen, Old big ‘ead revolutionised the club and took us from nobodies to European champions. His and Peter Taylor’s rock solid work ethic will never be forgotten, tributes at the ground and around the city will always remind us just how great he was. 10/10

Nottingham Forest Total: 104

Some might think he’s a F****t legend, but that’s just a load of b*llocks.  He’s a Leicester legend and they know it.

Leicester City Greatest XI by Roger Domeneghetti

GK: Gordon Banks

We’ll let them have Shilton if they want.  We’ll go for the one that actually won the World Cup. Nuff said. 9/10

LB: Bobby Smith

Smith made his debut in the same game as Gary Lineker on New Year’s Day in 1979 and it was Smith who scored.  He went on to help the club win promotion in 1980 and 1983, scoring 21 goals in exactly 200 appearances playing both in midfield and at left back.  He died of cancer in 2010 aged just 56. 8/10

CB: Simon Grayson

He played for City 229 times but will forever be remembered for scoring the away goal that took us past Wimbledon and into the League Cup final in 1997.  Grayson was also voted our player of the season that year and it was just reward for one of the mainstays of the Leicester side that enjoyed a rollercoaster ride before establishing themselves in the Premier League under Martin O’Neill. 8/10

CB: Frank McLintock

McLintock signed for the club as a 17-year-old and was part of the defence of the great “Ice Kings” team that tantalisingly missed out on the double in 1963.  He moved on to achieve that feat with Arsenal before returning to Leicester for a season as manager which saw us relegated.  We’ll focus on the positives, though... 8/10

CB: Steve Walsh

“He’s here, he’s there, he’s every-f***ing-where”. Walsh holds the unwanted record for the most Football League red cards -14 – and was banned for 11 games in the mid-Eighties breaking an opponent’s jaw.  During his 14 years at Filbert Street he became a club legend and was the heart of a side that became a Foxes’ side he eventually captained to League success. 9/10

RM: Steve Lynex

He was born in West Bromwich, but we’ll forgive him that for his time marauding up and down the right wing for City.  He not only created numerous chances for Gary Lineker and Alan Smith, but he was also a prolific goal scorer himself netting  57 times in 213 games. He reached double figures in three seasons for the club. Not bad for a winger… 9 /10

LM: Len Glover

Lenny had speed and skill in equal measure enabling him to terrorise defences and deliver crosses with pin-point accuracy from his left foot. When he signed for the club in 1967 the £80,000 we paid was a record for a winger. He helped the club to the FA Cup final in 1969 and, after we were relegated the same season, was integral to us lifting the second division title in 1971. In the mid-Seventies four Leicester players were selected for England but Glover wasn’t one of them, leading to the claim he was the ‘best uncapped winger ever’.  8/10

CM:  Gary McAllister

Supposedly a ‘make-weight’ in the deal that also took Ali Mauchlen to Leicester from Motherwell, the then 21-year-old quickly established himself as an elegant and accurate passer. He gained international recognition for Scotland while at the club.  He famously didn’t take kindly to Brian Clough’s rude manner when the old p*ss head tried to sign him, turning down a £1.15m move to the City Ground in the 1988/89 season and stayed put at Filbert Street before joining Leeds and helping them take the title in 1992. 9/10

CM:  Neil Lennon

Lennon was on the verge of joining Ron Atkinson’s Coventry when Marin O’Neill persuaded him otherwise. Lennon was a crucial part of that great team that O’Neill built building a reputation as one of the best midfielders in the business. He even managed to make Alan Shearer fall over by head-butting his foot.  9/10

CF: Gary Lineker

When Lineker made his debut for the club aged 18, the local lad was such an unknown the Leicester Mercury couldn’t spell his name right. They don’t get it wrong these days. He was a regular for four seasons from 1981 scoring 103 goals before joining Everton and of course he is England’s second highest goalscorer of all time, grabbing the Golden Boot with six goals at the 1986 World Cup. C**p pundit, mind. 8/10

CF:  Arthur Chandler

Lineker might be one of England’s top goalscorers but he pales in comparison to Chandler as far as Leicester is concerned. Chandler, who was part of the side that finished second and third in the League  in the Twenties, is the club’s all-time top goalscorer with 259 (in 393 games), has scored the most top flight goals in a single season (34, twice), has the most hat-tricks (17). Really, he should have a statue… 9/10

Manager: Martin O’Neill

Some might think he’s a F****t legend, but that’s just a load of b*llocks.  He’s a Leicester legend and they know it. He came to Filbert Street with the club in turmoil having just lost our second manager in little over a year. Despite a shaky start we gained promotion via the play-offs and then embarked on four magical years under O’Neill which saw us win the League Cup twice, finish in the top 10 for four consecutive seasons, play in Europe and gain famous League wins at Anfield and Old Trafford. He is now sprinkling his magic dust over part of the North East.  10/10

Leicester City Total: 104

This one ends in a draw, so let's hope today's game is a bit more exciting score wise. Both sides have had pretty haphazard league seasons thus far, so each set of fans will be itching to get one over on their local rivals this afternoon.

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