It is with great excitement that I write to you on one of the most iconic weekends in the English football calendar, FA Cup third-round day.I extend a very warm welcome to all representatives of West Ham United.
When the opportunity to become chairman and owner of Nottingham Forest arose I was attracted by the sensational history of a club whose fortunes I had followed as a boy. But I was also compelled by the prospect of English football as a whole, with all its wonderful traditions and the unique passion of its followers. The FA Cup is perhaps the greatest reflection of both elements.
I had my first taste of the competition last season, when we were drawn at home to Oldham Athletic in the third round. While we were all left bitterly disappointed by the result Oldham’s run, which saw them go on to beat Liverpool before forcing a replay against Everton, is the perfect example of why this competition is such a magical part of football in this country.
Success in the league is undoubtedly our priority this season, but what better way to complement a successful Championship campaign than with an enjoyable run in a competition we have proudly won twice?
Today’s opposition also have an impressive FA Cup record and I am eagerly awaiting a match which I’m sure will entertain everyone both here at The City Ground and those watching live on television.
We head into today’s game in superb form. I was ecstatic with our points return over Christmas, particularly considering the opponents we faced, and although we were left heartbroken by Reading’s last minute equaliser on New Year’s Day I feel it is imperative we maintain a sense of perspective.
Our performances have been excellent and we have now firmly established ourselves in the playoff positions. I must give great credit to the players and staff for their excellent work over such a difficult period and, of course, to the supporters who I have no doubt spurred us on to three fantastic results.
I sincerely hope we produce a magnificent display today to commence our progression in a competition close to all of our hearts.
Come on you Reds.
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