Return1018 A Successor  Godfather Of Champions首页

turn off the light Eye Protection    

Font:Big Middle Small

Previous Index Next Add Bookmarks

Shania had also taken notice of the recent media reports. She was not blind or deaf. She was aware of the things that the fans did in the stands and at the training ground. If she were about her thoughts, she would certainly be selfish and want Twain to stay by her side and quit. However, after more than a decade with her husband, she also knew that only he could make the final decision. Therefore, she cleverly chose to remain silent.

At such times, she could only choose to trust her husband.

"I'll have to hold a press conference in a few days to announce whether I'm staying or leaving," Twain suddenly said during dinner, which surprised Shania a little. While the media was abuzz with speculation a few days ago, Twain kept mum at home.

She was keenly aware of something.

"It's time to resolve all this," Twain said.

Her guess was right.

However, Shania did not "What's your decision?" but just nodded and did not say anything.

Twain was not surprised by Shania's reaction, so he did not offer to explain what he would say at the press conference.

There was a mutual understanding between the two of them.

  ※※※

The question of whether Twain would stay or leave obviously affected the team's performance. Nottingham Forest came close to losing against Fulham in an away game during the weekend. Fortunately, Balotelli broke through Fulham's goal with a beautiful free-kick at the last minute to equalize the score at 1:1 and save the team a point. However, because of the tie in the game, their ranking did not continue to rise but remained in seventh place.

For the Forest team to end up with a tie against Fulham was still lucky. In terms of both overall skills and actual situation, Nottingham Forest was at a complete disadvantage. If the Fulham striker had not been too wasteful with opportunities, they would have been defeated even if Balotelli had scored a goal.

Perhaps Fulham did not expect Nottingham Forest to play so poorly. They were overly excited.

For example, there were a few occasions when the goal was almost empty, and it was easier to score in such situations, but the Fulham striker excitedly shot too hard and pumped the ball straight into the stands behind the goal...

After the game, Twain admitted in an interview that he and his team had been "very, very, very lucky" today, which were his original words. He had used "very" thrice.

However, he did not criticize the team's performance.

He knew that the team's erratic performance had something to do with himself. If the crew of a ship did not know whether their most beloved captain would be able to stay after this adventure and continue to lead them to take on the world, they would grow doubtful and be swayed. It would naturally affect their combat effectiveness in battle.

Twain had thought that by staying silent, he could minimize the impact. It turned out that he was wrong. He must give his crew a decision to let them know what the future would hold.


A reporter asked, "I'd heard you promised to give a reply to the fans who want you to stay?"

Twain did not deny it. Instead, he nodded and replied, "Yes. When I get back to Nottingham, I'll announce the matter at a press conference."

The reporter did not expect Twain to answer so readily. He thought he heard wrong and hurriedly asked again, "Are you saying that you will announce whether you will be staying after the end of the season when you return to Nottingham?"

Twain nodded and did not say anything anymore. However, it was enough. The media and fans were excited by Twain's answer. As for the game... Who cared?

  ※※※

On the way back to Nottingham from London on the bus, Twain found that Evan Doughty was around, and he came to him on his own initiative.

"David..." He looked at Kerslake, the assistant manager who sat with Doughty.

Kerslake was a smart man. He knew Evan must have something to discuss with Twain from the looks of it and that it had something to do with Twain's going or staying. Therefore, he got up and gave his seat to the chairman while he saw in the seat behind, next to Eastwood.

While Kerslake gave up his seat, Twain did not say a word but looked up at the two men who exchanged seats.

When Evan sat down, he did not beat about the bush, got right to the point, and asked, "Have you made up your mind, Tony?"

Twain nodded.

"I guess it's not a good decision for me. Can I persuade you to change your mind?"

Twain shook his head and said, "If you still want my friendship, Evan, you won't do that."

Evan Doughty turned his eyes away and looked ahead with some disappointment.

Seeing how disappointed Evan Doughty was, Twain could not bear to stay indifferent, so he consoled him: "There is a saying in China that states, 'If the old doesn't go, the new will not come.' The same holds true for the Forest team and you. If I, the old guy, don't leave, how can you have a fresh new wind?"

Evan Doughty did not care about any Eastern proverbs. He only cared about one thing and said, "But I can't think of any new manager that would be as good as you. I've been looking for more than four years, but I still haven't found him."

Twain smiled. It looked like it was going to be easy for Evan to accept his departure. He just had to find him a suitable successor.

"Of course, I have a good candidate for the new Nottingham Forest manager. I think very, very highly of him. He can definitely bring the Forest team back on track."

Evan Doughty was stunned by Twain's comments because the unruly Twain seldom used such blatant flattering words to describe a man, so he searched through world-class managers in his mind.

"Don't tell me it is Mourinho?"

It was the only answer he could think of because the two had similar temperaments and he was the only person whom Twain could think so highly of.

He did not expect Twain to shake his head.

"No, it's not."

He did not explain to Evan why Mourinho was not the man. He just named his candidate.

"It's Dunn."

The name gave pause to Evan. He was not shocked, but... he basically could not recall who this Dunn was.

Twain saw the doubt in his eyes, but it did not mean anything. It was normal that the chairman of a football club could not remember an assistant manager who had left the team eight years ago. At the time, Evan was full of self-importance and was not concerned about the people and things around him.

"Do you still remember when I first brought him to the club and wanted you to give him a job?" Twain slowly recounted the story to Evan. Anyway, it was almost two hours' drive from London to Nottingham, so he had time. The journey was boring, and it was rather interesting to tell stories.

That was when Evan remembered. "That Chinese young man?"

Twain nodded and said, "He started as a regular coach in the youth team and worked as the manager of the youth team, First Team coach and assistant manager of the First Team. He left the club seven-and-a-half years ago to become the manager of Notts County team and now Notts County is ranked midstream in the EFL Championship."

When he heard "Notts County", Evan frowned. When he heard again that it was currently just a midstream team in the English Football League Championship, his frown grew deeper.

Twain naturally took note of Evan's reaction.

"Tony, this man..."

"You don't think he's famous and has an impressive enough resume?"

Evan nodded. It was what he thought. He felt strongly that a manager without prestige could not control the locker room. How many of the managers who had been brought in before could manage the big-name players? Almost none of them could control the locker room, so it became factional and the team fell apart. How could they have the strength to compete? If the manager's resume was not stellar, it meant that there were no brilliant results and it would not impress the public. Neither could it convince him that the team would have a brilliant future in this person's hands. Furthermore, the lack of brilliant results also implied that he did not have enough experience to play big. Nottingham Forest was a Premier League team and its goal was in Europe. Was an English Football League Championship manager able to cope with that level of competition?

"Not all managers need to rely on their own prominence to manage the locker room. It doesn't matter if his resume does not look good because it is easier to draw a better picture on a piece of blank paper," Twain said. "Before I got my first championship trophy, my resume didn't even look as good as Dunn's."

His words were true. Twain's resume really did not look good when he first made his debut. He lost his team's chance of qualifying for the Premier League in the most crucial game. Shortly after, he was sacked and returned to the youth team. Then, when he became Forest's First Team manager again, he had only half a season of First Team coaching experience. However, he still created the most glorious 11 years in the history of Nottingham Forest Football Club.

If Evan had kicked Twain out for not being famous and having a bad resume, perhaps Nottingham Forest would never have had that kind of glory.

"And Dunn is indeed capable enough. He just needs a better stage than Notts County. Think about the Nottingham Derby in January, when his team did well and was ahead of us for 45 minutes. I'm sure he'll do great work for you if he's given time."

"A Chinese man..." Evan was still a little worried and was not willing to be persuaded by Twain just like that.

"What's wrong with that?" Twain raised his eyebrows and added, "Chen Jian is also Chinese, but he is now part of our main force." Actually, Twain was itching to say to Evan:

I am a real Chinese man and Dunn is the true Englishman. If you're unwilling to believe in a Chinese man, it means you don't believe me. Is that it? But I've won so many championship titles...

He certainly could not say such words aloud. Twain only muttered a few remarks in his heart to express scorn for Evan's prejudiced views.

Following which, Evan fell into a long silence. The bus was moving fast and smoothly on the highway, with the players and coaches each doing their own thing. Some people listened to music with headphones on and some took a nap with their eyes closed. Some people even played games with their handheld consoles and cell phones.

Twain adjusted the angle of the back of his seat slightly and leaned back, intending to catch a few winks on the bus. As he had said, he was prone to feeling sleepy. He took the opportunity to get some rest to keep a clear head.

Evan did not seem to pay any more attention to Twain and continued in silence. Twain did not care that the club chairman was next to him either and closed his eyes to sleep right away.

  ※※※

Twain woke up when the bus arrived in Nottingham. He found that Evan Doughty was still sitting next to him. Doughty looked like he waited for him to wake up.

"What's on your mind, Evan?" He asked.

Hearing Twain's question, Evan seemed to rouse himself from deep thought and turned to look at Twain. He said, "I was wondering if your recommended successor would be willing to live in your shadow..."

Twain pulled a face. He had thought about this issue before. To Dunn, this arrangement of his might be a bit overbearing. Twain had always considered problems from his own point of view but did not seem to consider Dunn's. A young manager with little to show for in his resume suddenly wanted to become Tony Twain's successor. Such pressure was enough to overwhelm many ordinary people with poor mental strength.

However, having interacted with Dunn for so long and sharing the same unspeakable secret, Twain was fully convinced that Dunn was not an ordinary man.

"In the first few years, there may be such an influence," Twain muttered, "But it will get better slowly. Take it slow, Evan. The Forest team still has a long, long way to go..."

Evan sighed and knew he was not able to convince the stubborn man next to him.

"Very well. When would be a good time for me to approach him?"

"Wait until the season is about to end. If it's too soon, the groundless talk in the media could cause a needless stir." Twain was very glad that Evan had finally decided to accept Dunn. In that way, he was partially at ease already.

What about the other part?

As the bus pulled into Wilford, Evan patted Twain on the shoulder before getting out of the bus and said, "When do you think it's best to have a press conference, Tony? The club can arrange it for you."

"Erm..." Twain opened his mouth and looked at Evan Doughty's back as he alighted the bus, thinking that he must be feeling pleased for turning the tables...

He thought of the fans, full of anticipation, the banners dancing in the stands. Twain felt that it was much harder to deal with the fans than with the boss...

It was the truth. He had to consider feelings when dealing with the fans...

Previous Index Next Add Bookmarks