Nottingham Forest, newly promoted to the Championship, are to be docked 10 points by the Football Association in a surprise bid to avoid potentially violent local derbies with their fiercest rivals, the team which was the worst Premier League side ever Derby County, or the Hornless Rams.
Forest swept to a surprise last-day success when fellow League One promotion contenders Doncaster Rovers and Carlisle United baulked at the final hurdle, leaving the Midlands club in the second promotion spot behind Swansea City.
Yesterday though, the carpet was well-and-truly yanked from beneath the feet of all at the City Ground, and officials warned fans on the club's website not to go planning 'Bingo Picnics' at Wolverhampton, Coventry or, indeed, Derby, just yet.
Derby were relegated from football's top flight last month with the least points ever, and would have been certain to have come under fire next season from Forest's notoriously sarcastic fans. The FA have, therefore, moved swiftly to punish Forest, and to avoid the kind of scenes that were all-too-familiar in the 1970s, when violence was the norm, and football, as a result, more exciting.
Forest chairman Nigel Doughty said this morning:
"It's grossly unfair, but we will fight tooth-and-nail in the playoffs to try and get promoted, so that we might yet get to play Derby and kick their fucking heads in!"