Paul Smith from Forest?
— The Stacey West (@Staceywestblog) May 10, 2018
I’m very, very surprised to be writing about this Paul Smith, but it does show that one man’s opinion can differ greatly to another.
Former Forest trainee Smith was one of just a handful of players to survive the administration-led cull in 2001 and go on to enjoy play-off success of sorts under Keith Alexander. Smith would have made far more appearances for Lincoln had he not suffered from a string of injuries.
He was never a prolific scorer and his lack of goals perhaps does a disservice to his overall contribution during some tough years. Had we not entered administration I think it would be unlikely he would have been kept on but as one of the ‘cheaper options’ he was retained to help balance the books. He played his part in the run up to the final against Bournemouth, scoring in the first leg at Sincil Bank. However, the 5-2 defeat in Cardiff was the last action he saw in a Lincoln shirt and he dropped down to play for Ilkeston Town.
I’ve found it hard to write about Smith here and in my Who’s who book, because he always frustrated me as a player. Some matches he looked every inch the limited lower league footballer, but on those rare occasions that he turned it on, there were glimpses of quality. Perhaps it was the injuries, we’ll never know but I always felt the was more to come from Paul Smith. It seems at least one reader disagrees with me, so he enters the voting as a rank outsider.