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Beesotted asked PA news & former Middx Chronicle reporter Jim Levack to give his opinion on the Adam Forshaw debacle

Whatever the outcome of Forshaw-gate, this week could, in years to come, be seen as a pivotal moment in the history of the club.


Brentford, for me and many Bees fans hopefully reading this, has always stood for loyalty, fair play, decency… doing the right thing, occasionally even to the detriment of our long-term fortunes.


That has continued under Mark Warburton, whose comments I’m delighted to say have repeatedly reflected my sometimes knee-jerk reactions to blips along the way.


I’ll lay my cards on the table here. Clayton Donaldson p****d me off. Not his leaving – I don’t for one second begrudge him his right to choose – but the slightly underhand manner of it.


So when Warburton’s disquiet, not at Clayton but his agent’s lack of honesty and sudden silence, emerged I was delighted.


Far better he’d said ‘I fancy a move to Brum but thanks to Brentford and their wonderful fans for giving me the chance etc etc’. Even if he didn’t mean it, it’s the decent thing to do and more honest than radio silence.


I always rated Donaldson, but his goals to chances ratio was not good enough for the Championship (hope that doesn’t come back to haunt me). Once again, Warburton’s repeated pleas for more clinical finishing gave me the chance to say ‘I told you so’ to my lads as we drove home from games last term.


So back to the point. The manager’s diplomatic comments surrounding what is tantamount to Wigan’s ‘tapping up’ of League One’s Player of the Year again won my vote.


Like a child bullied at school who suddenly finds his feet to become a bully himself, Wigan and Dave Whelan have not exactly covered themselves in glory with their latest market trader behaviour.


Football is a pretty tawdry industry – even as a manager of an under-19s team I’ve been disgusted but not surprised by some of the shenanigans that go on to secure players – but you expect better from Whelan and dare I say, Uwe Rosler.


The latter is, beneath it all, I believe a good man. You don’t go through what he has without taking on board some humility and awareness of what really matters in life.


Which makes the timing, manner and importantly value of the approach all the more disrespectful to a club that gave Uwe his big break in English football.


Perhaps he simply mentioned who he wanted, headed off on the Latics’ tour of Germany and left it to Dave ‘did you know I broke my leg in the cup final’ Whelan to complete the formalities.


If he did, as reported, weigh in with an offer of £1.5 million then it is an insult to Brentford and one I sincerely hope Uwe knew nothing about.


Clearly there’s no sentiment in business and Whelan’s attitude is probably that he is simply doing to us what clubs have done to him. But, and here’s the rub, this is where our club now sits at a crossroads in history.


Do we, as we have done many times before, roll over, accept peanuts and carry on, or do we stand in the way of a player who helped us win promotion and so gain an unwanted reputation in the game as career thwarters?


The solution, I would suggest, needs to be somewhere in between.


Forshaw is clearly worth big money and like a market trader, Whelan knows deep down that the £2.5 million Hull paid for Harry Maguire from the same division is a minimum benchmark.


In Matthew Benham he may well have met his match though, so if Brentford stand firm – as I hope they will, regardless of the outcome of Forshaw’s ‘head-clearing’ break – then a solution can be found that suits all parties.


The only problem is that if Forshaw stays because Brentford demand the going rate, the damage may well have already been done and his head turned. In which case, let him go, but for not a penny less than the money we all know he’s worth so we can at least rebuild.


It might be naïve of me to even think this, but surely the football authorities need to clamp down on this kind of unethical behaviour that can seriously affect an entire club’s preparations at such an important time of the season. They won’t.


As for young Adam, if he has handed in a transfer request then I’d be blunt… it might have to be the reserves for you son until we get what you’re worth. Hard on the lad, but as the saying goes, no one player is bigger than the club.


Like Clayton, I genuinely don’t begrudge him a move if he thinks he might better himself, but for now and for such a key transfer I think the club’s future has to come first.


As he has done all along, I’m sure Mark Warburton will do the right thing for Brentford Football Club and come out with the right quotes at the right time.


I sincerely hope so because if this backfires, it sets an extremely dangerous precedent.

Jim Levack