Nottingham Forest manager Dougie Freedman has praised the work Stuart Pearce did in bringing the club’s academy and first-team set ups closer together.Pearce was relieved of his managerial duties at the weekend and Freedman is grateful to his predecessor for the positive structure he developed during his time in charge at The City Ground.
Freedman told Forest Player: “I’ve got to thank Stuart for the work he’s done with the academy.
“I’m very fond of academies, I was the same at Crystal Palace and Bolton. The good work Stuart has done, bringing people together, is certainly something I believe in and will look to take on.
“I’m a football fan – I’m a supporter. It gives me so much pleasure to bring a player from the youth team into the first team. I had a successful record of doing that at Crystal Palace and we must have given six or seven debuts at Bolton.
“It’s something I have a big passion about.”
Freedman is keen to ‘promote from within’, revealing he and incoming assistant Lennie Lawrence will look to staff and players already at the club for further help.
He said: “People say the players and fans are no longer joined together, and the reason for that is because we don’t promote from within too much.
“Jimmy Gilligan will help me, Steve Sutton will help me. I want to promote from within on and off the field because I believe that brings the fans close to the players.
“I know there are one or two younger players that have been playing recently – young Ben’s doing very well – and I will try and add to that.”
Click here to watch Freedman’s first interview on Forest Player in full.