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How Evangelos Marinakis has made sense of the Nottingham Forest madhouse

With Marinakis restricted on transfer spending by the Football League’s profit and sustainability rules, Forest are expected to be one of the most active clubs this summer if promotion is secured.

Funds will be made available, and the preparations for either scenario – Premier League or Championship – have been in place for months.

Plans to build a new stand at the City Ground are also accelerating, while the recent installation of hi-tech cameras at Forest’s training base, to monitor training both for the squad and individually, are regarded as a major step forward.

Taking Forest into a new era is the objective and, while there is caution over the threat Huddersfield will present, promotion is viewed as a game-changer for the club on so many levels.

Marinakis is integral to the club’s future. Little is known about him in this country: he will be 55 in July and rarely conducts interviews.

He is known to be very superstitious and has been reluctant to attend home matches over fears of jinxing the team’s results.

He spends a lot of his time either at his base in Piraeus, near Athens, or his apartment in London, and is in regular contact with other Forest staff such as Dane Murphy, the chief executive, and director of football Kyriakos Dourekas.

Refereeing standards in the Championship have been a frequent source of frustration for Marinakis, who was understood to be furious after the 1-0 defeat at Bournemouth which killed off Forest’s hopes of automatic promotion earlier this month.

He has long insisted that Video Assistant Referees should be employed in the second tier, so was relieved when the EFL concluded that the system will be utilised at Wembley for this weekend’s final.

Another frustration has been parachute payments for clubs relegated from the Premier League, which he insists makes the division unfair and lopsided.

Associates in Greece and this country insist he is totally driven by the pursuit of success: indeed, while emulating Olympiacos’s dominance in Greece was never going to happen here, the lows have only made him more determined to turn the club around.

There is a degree of frustration that it has taken so long to secure a play-off finish, after over 70 players recruited with the intention of challenging at the top end.

Last year’s appointment of Cooper, who succeeded Chris Hughton, has been the key moment.

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