American businessman John Jay Moores is close to becoming the new owner of Nottingham Forest as he is said to have agreed a £54 million deal with current owner Fawaz Al-Hasawi.
A new era on the horizon
Ever since the Al-Hasawi family purchased Nottingham Forest on 11th July 2012, it has been a downward spiral. Forest have finished progressively lower in the Championship league table since Fawaz Al-Hasawi became chairman whilst attendances have dipped considerably at the City Ground.
There was an attendance of just 15,864 on Wednesday night as Forest drew 1-1 with Preston North End. This means Forest are now getting lower attendance than what they were averaging in League One, showing the apathy amongst fans towards the Fawaz Al-Hasawi era.
One positive is that the club is close to being sold in a week where Coventry fans were told they are stuck with their owners Sisu after controversial protests against Sheffield United mid-week.
Many fans are hoping that John Jay Moores brings a breath of fresh air to the club and implements a proper structure on which Forest can build on and maybe finally make a serious push for the Premier League with no off-the-field issues.
Plans already being put in place
He is said to have already got plans in place for when the takeover of Forest is complete with former Bournemouth chairman Trevor Watkins to be given the Chief Executive role. This was a role never properly filled by Al-Hasawi, despite many attempts at doing so.
Montanier to be given time
Many fans were expecting that as soon as the takeover goes through, Moores would dismiss manager Philippe Montanier from his role and replace him with his own man, like he is doing in other roles at the club.
However, this is said to not be in Moores’ plans when he takes over as he will give Montanier a fair chance to prove he is the right man to lead the club forward.
It is unlikely that if Forest continue to drop closer to the relegation zone that this will be a significant amount of time but at least Montanier is being given a chance to turn things around in what has been a difficult period for the club.
Montanier would argue that any manager would struggle at Forest of late due to the huge amount of injuries he is having to deal with in the lead up to Forest’s clash with Wolves on Saturday afternoon. He has key players such as Chris Cohen, Henri Lansbury, Britt Assombalonga, Daniel Pinillos and more all out through injury.
Forest have made many managerial changes in the past especially in the last few years under Al-Hasawi and not one has been successful. It could be argued that even the top managers in the World would struggle with Forest’s injury list at the moment.
However, if Forest’s new owner John Jay Moores does look to replace Montanier, then there can’t be many better options than former Birmingham manager Gary Rowett who was sacked in mid-week. He would be a popular choice amongst many Forest fans and has the ability to turn Forest’s fortunes around.