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Forest rubbish rift rumours

Nottingham Forest chairman Fawaz Al Hasawi insists he enjoys a 'good working relationship' with Alex McLeish.

Last Updated: 05/02/13 at 11:32 Post Comment

Alex McLeish: Owner insists his position is not under threat

Alex McLeish: Owner insists his position is not under threat

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Reports in the wake of a disappointing deadline day at the City Ground suggested that all was not well behind the scenes.

McLeish, who was only appointed as successor to the ousted Sean O'Driscoll in December, was said to be working on borrowed time after suffering a falling out with those above him.

Al Hasawi has, however, rubbished such claims and insists that McLeish has always been given the freedom to run the football side of things as he sees fit.

In a statement released on the club's official website, he said: "Alex and I talk every day, at least twice a day. We have a very good working relationship and it troubles me greatly that people think otherwise.

"I have been involved in football for 15 years and have never interfered when it comes to the players a manager wants to sign. I didn't do that in Kuwait and I haven't done it since we purchased Nottingham Forest last summer.

"Yes, I have recommended players to managers but the final decision rests with them, not me. We have signed 18 players for Forest this season and all of them were either chosen by Alex McLeish or Sean O'Driscoll.

"All I want to see is Nottingham Forest back in the Premier League - and if that means I have to sign another 18 players that Alex wants then I will do it.

"Alex and I have spoken at length today and he has already outlined to me the kind of players he would like to bring in on emergency loan. Whatever players he asks for I will try my hardest to bring to Nottingham Forest."

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He added: "I've heard it suggested that my family don't have the money to fund what we are trying to achieve at Forest or that we don't have any idea what we are doing. That upsets me because all I want is to make this great Club successful but the last word on transfers will always be with the manager.

"People have been asking me whether I insisted that the Club signed Khaled Al-Rashidi but that's not true. Yes, I recommended Khaled and two other Kuwaiti players and asked the Club to have a look at them and that is exactly what happened.

"The goalkeeping coach Paul Barron watched Khaled in training and travelled to Kuwait to see him play. He thinks he has a future in England and that's why we went back to the FA to apply for a work permit for a second time.

"Why would I a bring a player to England and pay his salary if the people I trust at the Club didn't think he was good enough?"

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