Khaldoon's words to the press...

Ever since news of the takeover broke there's been a certain amount of apprehension from the press, some understandable, i expect, lots not. Almost immediately, and admittedly with a little help from a certain podgy-faced pretend Doctor, we were going to sign the world's best players, all of them, at once, football done. Of course we didn't, i mean, we bid for a couple, one came, much ado about nothing. Once the transfer window had clicked shut the attention turned to the future of the manager; Hughes a dead man walking, out of his depth, not in the plans of the owner's, probably doesn't even pick the team. A load of shite the lot of it, of course.

I can, to a certain extent understand some of the opposition to foreign owners, football after all should not be some sort of willy-waving contest for folks with more money than sense, but the fact is that it has been for some time, and unless all clubs are going to be forced to compete on a level playing-field, e.g debt-free, then foreign investment is only going to increase as clubs up and down the land attempt to keep up with the Joneses. The days of hooky car salesman with a few bob buying top clubs are gone, it makes sense than those with the vastest wealth possible will end up showing their interest, and perhaps if people would've been more against the changes in ownership of clubs years back then they wouldn't have anything to get on their high horses about now.

I guess what i'm trying to say is that owners should be judged on what they do, and how they carry themselves, not which country they're from or how they earnt their fortune. Lumping foreign owners into one basket is nonsensical, it needn't be that black and white, some will do a great deal of good for clubs and some won't, much in the same way that some British owners go about their business the right way and a fair few don't. Since ADUG took over they've conducted themselves the right way, said all the right things, allowed Garry Cook and his team to push the club forward off the pitch and most importantly, have shown an unwavering support for Mark Hughes when, in truth, many wouldn't have and most of the media was awaiting his sacking with baited breath.

Mansour, we're told, keeps a low profile in his business dealings, and why wouldn't he? It was made very clear from early on that Hughes and his staff have complete control over the football side of matters, Cook and his over off-the-pitch dealings, and Khaldoon Al Mubarak would act as Chairman, giving the both his support and reporting back to the group. People who don't follow the club seem to forget that Al-Fahim was quickly removed from his role, the first sensible step on a charm offensive that appears, in part at least, to be finally starting to work. Mubarak, from what i've seen so far, strikes me as a fair man, one without an ego, and someone who'll do everything in his power to assure the club not only shows progress, but that does so in the right way, a fair way, and whilst showing decorum.

His comments this week, just go to further prove to those who'd rather deal in banter and rumour than actual facts, that there is a firm plan, and ADUG are far from a bunch of power-mad billionaires just hoping to come in, attempt to turn a club into some sort of perverse Championship Manager fan's wet dream, throw their weight about and then get on their bikes. Despite us having more money to spend than most it's still a case of accounting for what goes out and comes in, and although we may well have to pay a premium to tempt particular players we have budgets, ideas about values of players, and something vaguely resembling a wage structure.

The man blatantly isn't a mug, far from it. Everything he's said so far (and it's not a lot, other chairmen take note) has made complete sense, and he seems very aware that things will take time, and have to be done in a certain manner. I really couldn't imagine the club being in better hands, he particularly has completely impressed me. There was no hint of panic when results weren't necessarily as consistent as we'd have hoped, no stories leaking out of the camp, no battles of will, the owners have simply backed Cook and Hughes and let them get on with things, it's a refreshing approach, and certainly the right way.

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