Forest owner on wanted star: ''He rejected my contract offer earlier this year''

Forest City Ground

Nottingham Forest owner Fawaz Al Hasawi revealed Burnley target Henri Lansbury rejected a new deal at the City Ground earlier in the year.

Yesterday, Fawaz Al Hasawi issued a statement in light of his decision to sell Karl Darlow and Jamaal Lascelles behind manager Stuart Pearce's back, reiterating his desire to keep the better players at the club.

In a lengthy statement from the Forest chairman, the question over the interest from Burnley in Henri Lansbury was raised and answered as Fawaz signed off on the subject with the statement ''It is now time for Henri to make his decision.''

On Lansbury, Fawaz said: ''I would also like to address two other points of interest, the first of which concerns the future of Henri Lansbury,'' he said.

''Clearly he is a talented player who we don't want to lose."

''He rejected my offer of a new contract earlier this year but that deal remains on the table."

''He has two more years to run on his current contract and we hope he will play a huge part for us this season."

''It is now time for Henri to make his decision.''

Lansbury, who was signed from Arsenal in 2012 for a transfer fee believed to be in excess of £1million, has become a firm fans favourite at the City Ground and any deal where the player leaves the club is likely to invoke a backlash from the Nottingham Forest faithful.

Stuart Pearce, earlier in the week, also addressed the interest in Henri Lansbury and was adamant that he wouldn’t be sold.

‘’Henri is no somebody we would be keen to sell,'' said Pearce. ''I built a good rapport with Henri through the international years, he is a very good player in this league. We want to hang on to our better player, it is as simple as that.’’ 

Last season, despite being plagued by injury, the 23-year-old midfielder was still able to claim seven league goals and two league assists in 29 games. A tally, which if spread over a full season, would have theoretically seen him claim no less than 11 league goals.

It is no surprise that Fawaz Al Hasawi has publically announced his desire to keep the talented midfield player, but the tone of his statement indicates that he wants Lansbury to make a decision in the near future. Lansbury, if does decide to leave the City Ground in pursuit of Premier League football, would leave a huge void in the Nottingham Forest midfield which would certainly be a cause of concern for both Fawaz and Pearce with the new season just a few days away. 

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