With Steve Cotterill seen shaking the hands of owner Fawaz Al Hasawi, that set one set of tongues wagging but it was later claimed that Williams was set…to quit and that he wasn’t in charge of team selections during his spell as head coach.
The Nottingham Post have him responding to the two latter rumours, where he was insistent he wasn’t about to walk, and that he’d been in total control of the tactics and team selections for the last four games.
Asked about the speculation of Al Hasawi ‘influencing’ things from the Boardroom that were apparently going to cause him to walk, he confirmed they had regular chats but that was about it.
‘I would not say I was shocked, I would just say that it is not true. In the four games I have been in this role, I can categorically say that I picked the team and the tactics for those games. The results have not gone the way we would have liked, but those teams and tactics were totally down to me. As staff, we all discuss the players and the team, but the final say has always been down to me. There has been no suggestions about team selection from the chairman. We might have the odd discussion about the team, we will talk about players and things like that. But, categorically, it is down to me to pick the team. That is what I have done in the last four games.’
Al Hasawi, to the same outlet, also gave his own response to the suggestion he was team managing from afar.
‘Why should I pick the team? I have a manager to do the job. Why would I pick the team? It is not right. It is no good for the team or for the club. It is not my place to pick the team. It is my job to support the team and the manager to the end of the season. That is what disappoints me, because we need to be together right now and things like this do not help. I was really upset about these allegations. We are in a position where anything could happen this season and we need people to support the team; we need to be together, to ensure that we stay in the same division.’
Pressed on the relegation worries with eight defeats in the last ten games, he added.
‘Of course I am worried about relegation, because we know that anything can happen in this division. We have to focus for the next game. We have to focus for every game. If we had 52 or 53 points now, I would not be worried. But it is not certain that 46 points would be enough. It may be. But we know that anything could happen. If one of the bottom teams were to win their next three games, it would put us under pressure. We do not want to see that happen and the players have to consider that possibility. They have to focus on every single game. I know we are under embargo. I know the fans feel discouraged at the minute. But one win right now would pay them back and that is what we need to work to get.’
Complicating matters further was a tweet on Wednesday that read.
The truth will be revealed soon and we know exactly who is behind all of this. #nffc
? @FAWAZ_ALHASAWI (@fawaz_alhasawi1) 6 April 2016
The obvious, and expecting, internet response doesn’t take long to find.