Another season of wild inconsistency predicted at Nottingham Forestby Mike Holden / 04 August 2017, 10:26Tweet
Mike Holden (@Ratings_Mike) previews Mark Warburton and Nottingham Forest ahead of the 2017/18 Championship season.
Mark Warburton was appointed in March, tasked with sparing Nottingham Forest from the drop with eight games to go. He did just enough. A one-point cushion upon arrival was cut to zero but the Reds survived on goal difference with a comfortable 3-0 win over Ipswich on the final day. Now the former Rangers boss gets a clean slate and an opportunity to build under new owner Evengelos Marinakis. The mood around the City Ground is positive again, despite the sale of star stiker Britt Assombalonga to Middlesbrough.
Warburton is a visionary and an idealist, a man with a clear picture of the road ahead. In the early 2000s, he gave up a well-paid job as a city trader to pursue his dream of a professional coaching career, taking a 90 per cent salary cut when an academy job turned up at Watford. During his time at Rangers, he once remarked that his Plan B was to "do Plan A better" but his single-mindedness and reluctance to deviate from his chosen path can sometimes lead to problems.
"This (takeover) cannot be a short-term fix. We have plans in place and I’ve been very impressed by what I’ve heard. We will still be restricted still by FFP but it’s important that this club goes forward now, with strong foundations. However, I think the aspirations they have for the club will be aggressive. They know where the club needs to be. They know the history of the club and they know what they want to achieve. Hopefully, things can move forward now."
The jury is out on Warburton after a difficult spell at Rangers in the SPL and though he’s smart enough to say and do the right things at a club where managers are obliged to do things a particular way, he might not be granted enough of the commodity he needs most: time. There’s a commitment to expansive football but the mantra of 'let the opposition worry about us' makes them vulnerable against savvy opposition. Another season of wild inconsistency would be no great surprise.
Prediction: bottom half