Most football fans will tell you they would love their own Roman Abramovich or Sheikh Mansour. Those that don’t are lying. Some Nottingham Forest fans are convinced there are billionaires – and you need a ten-figure fortune to make a difference in football these days – queuing up to buy their club.
Take a look at Liverpool, West Ham, Blackburn, Everton or even Manchester United and tell me where the rich men with bags of cash are. And then take a look at the situation Leicester, Leeds, Hull, Charlton, Southampton and Newcastle have found themselves in. QPR are owned by Lakshmi Mittal, the fifth richest man in the world and, while they might be top of the Championship, they haven’t exactly bought their way there.
Nigel Doughty, Nottingham Forest chairman since 2002 and main benefactor since 1999, has made mistakes in his 12-year association with the club, but I’m strictly of the opinion “better the devil you know”. I don’t want the likes of Peter Ridsdale, Sam Hammam or Milan Mandaric anywhere near my club. Doughty had his fingers badly burnt during David Platt’s disastrous two-year reign as manager – I doubt any Forest fan will ever forgive Platt for what he did during his spell at the City Ground – and it’s been far from a ‘golden decade’ for the club, despite promises of Premier League football. But it has been a decade of sensible financial management…
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