Just One Look – Forest Green Rovers

Jun 29, 2022 | News


Forest Green Rovers

Last season’s League Two title winners looked to have had automatic promotion in their grasp long before the season’s end and whilst their promotion was confirmed after a goalless draw at The Mem on St George’s Day, it wasn’t until the final day of the season that they clinched the title.

That draw was the second time we had met the side from Nailsworth in the Football League, the first ending in a 2-0 win for the men from Gloucestershire last November. However, our paths crossed on four occasions in our one season in the National League and there have been countless friendly matches down the years.

Those four occasions during our non league sojourn comprised of two in the league, with the league fixture at Forest Green on August 25th 2014 ending in a 1-1 draw and the return fixture at The Mem being won 1-0 by our visitors.

The sides met in the two legged play off semi final at the end of that season, with the Rovers of Bristol winning both games, 1-0 at The New Lawn and 2-0 at The Mem.

Forest Green again reached the play offs the following season but were beaten 3-1 by Grimsby Town in the Wembley final. It was a case of third time lucky for them, though, as they again reached the Wembley play off final in 2016/17 where they were 2-1 winners against Tranmere Rovers.

In their five seasons as a league club they have finished 21st, 5th, 10th, 6th and champions and now they look forward to their first ever season in League One, when they will host some big clubs at their 5,141 capacity New Lawn ground.

For the record, they finished with 84 points last season, winning 23, drawing 15 and losing eight of their 46 league games.

Formed in 1889, Forest Green played their home games at The Lawn Ground just a few hundred yards down the hill from their current ground, though they played at a ground in Nailsworth between 1924 – 1927 before returning to the Lawn.

They moved to their New Lawn home for the start of the 2006/07 season and are already planning to move again, to the Eco Park complex near junction 13 of the M5.

They became the world’s first vegan club in 2015 and a number of eco friendly innovations have been installed on site. It is intended that their proposed new stadium will have the lowest carbon footprint of any stadium in the world.

A number of former Bristol Rovers players have turned out for Forest Green, though most of the following played non league football for the Nailsworth side. The following list, which is by no means complete, includes; Julian Alsop, Byron Anthony, Craig Armstrong, Dennis Bailey, Frankie Bennett, Steve Book, Billy Clark, Danny Coles, Christian Edwards, Josh Low, Jefferson Louis, Conrad Logan, David Lee, Luke James, Guy Ipoua, Carl Heggs, Lewis Haldane, David Gilroy, Kaid Mohamed, David Pipe, Sean Rigg, Matty Taylor, Andy Sandell and Adam Smith.

Former Rovers players Graham Day, who sadly passed away last year, and Peter Higgins were members of the Forest Green side that won the FA Vase at Wembley in 1982.

Two more former Rovers players who have represented Forest Green in finals are David ‘Boris’ Mehew who was in the side beaten 1-0 in the 1998/99 FA Trophy Final by Kingstonian at Wembley and Billy Clark, who played against Canvey Island in the FA Vase final of 2001. Forest Green also lost that one 1-0 but that game was played at Villa Park.

There will be a new manager in the dugout next season as last season’s boss, Rob Edwards, left to take over at Watford shortly after the end of the season. His successor is former Notts County manager Ian Burchnall.

From The Mem to the New Lawn is a round trip of 62 miles.

We are scheduled to meet in the league on the opening day of the campaign (July 30th) at the Mem and on March 11th at the New Lawn.

Forest Green Rovers

The New Lawn Stadium

Another Way



Keith Brookman

(all photos courtesy of Keith Brookman)