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Five Questions For Fawaz

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Oh, to return to those days of reckless daydreaming that the Kuwaiti takeover was going to return us to the promised land. Four years on, and a worrying majority of the fanbase are somewhere dangerously close to the acceptance end of the grief cycle – the apathy is real.

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Eight managers and an embargo down the line, only a fool would argue that we are in a better place now than we were before the takeover. Fawaz is getting dangerously close to the point of no return, and to pull himself back from the brink will require more than just his trademark charm offensive.

To get the fans back onside, Fawaz needs to give honest, transparent answers to a number of questions:

What are we actually looking for in a manager?

Pray tell. If we are looking for an experienced head with Championship knowledge, why are we talking to Ivan Vukomanović – he of three-months-in-charge-of-Standard Liege fame?

If the reason for sacking Dougie Freedman was the threat of relegation, why have we appointed a rookie manager assisted by another rookie coach – as brilliant and committed as they may or may not be?

If Fawaz could be genuine and upfront with what the club are looking for – and murmuring something to Natalie Jackson about stability and progress isn’t enough – we’d all be happier to get on board.

If one is appointed, will you give the new CEO chance to do their job?

Lest we forget, Al Hasawi has appointed a CEO in the past – a well-known and respected one at that. Paul Faulkner came in to the club in the wake of the Billy Davies debacle with a good reputation and high hopes of adding a level of business intelligence to the club.

Instead, his advice was routinely ignored by Fawaz, who sacked Pearce and appointed Dougie Freedman without consulting Faulkner, who promptly (and correctly) decided it wasn't worth the hassle.

Al Hasawi has acknowledged in the aforementioned interview with the BBC that he needs someone to come in to that role, but fans will need reassuring that he will give whoever is appointed a chance to do the job without constant encroachment.

Do we have a proper financial plan to avoid another embargo?

Although the club should come out of the Financial Fair Play measures by the start of pre-season, we haven’t exactly slashed our debts. Staggering losses are still being piled up on an annual basis, and a long term plan is needed to ensure these are reduced significantly to avoid another transfer ban being handed down.

Not only does action need to be taken, it needs to be seen to be taken.

The fans need to hear a solid plan with some specifics spelled out. How exactly are we going to meet these ever shrinking loss targets to avoid another embargo? The answer might not be what we want to hear, but it’s what we need to hear.

Why do we keep getting hit with winding up orders?

Once is unfortunate, twice is a problem, but five times? That suggests a worrying lack of competence in the club’s financial department, and that’s not even mentioning the failure to pay the staff on more than one occasion.

Serious questions have to be asked about the role of Lalou Tifrit, who hold the Jim Price-esque job title of "Head of Finance and Owner's Representative". Can this man really be trusted to continue to head up the club’s finances after so many high profile failures?

If he is to continue, he has a lot of bridge building to do. Worryingly, the Anniversary Dinner fiasco seems to be an attempt at this, and that’s not exactly been a PR win thus far.

What’s your endgame?

This is the biggie for many fans – what does Fawaz actually want from the club? If he’s looking for profit, he’s in the wrong business, so he must be seeking adulation – preferably whilst avoiding bankruptcy along the way.

The club is so obviously treading water on the field whilst leaking losses like a sieve off it, and Fawaz’ suggestion that he might walk away if he received an acceptable offer is starting to seem like a positive scenario rather than a threatening one.

Fawaz needs to step out and tell the fans what success looks like to him, and be realistic about how long it will take to achieve. We aren’t expecting the Champions League within five years, but the least fans are entitled to is a clear ethos and transparent statement of direction.

The question is can that be done with Fawaz in the spotlight all the time. And I think we all know the answer…

Tom Snee is, amongst other things, a columnist for @NonLeagueNews. You can follow him here.