As George Graham threatens legal action for what he calls the 'bizarre and inexplicable' decision to dismiss him, exective vice-chairman David Buchler explains the reasons in a personal message to supporters.
I am very sorry to report that a situation occurred today that has resulted in George Graham being dismissed from this club.
Just to give you a bit of background, I had private meetings with both George Graham and David Pleat during the course of the last 48 hours. These conversations related to what was happening at the club, the strategy of the club, what we were going to do in terms of improving the playing squad and investing in the club's activities. It was an all round discussion including the club's purchasing record.
Yesterday I had discussions with the agents of Sol Campbell, Les Ferdinand and Darren Anderton and then I read in the papers this morning the statements that George Graham made yesterday to the press about lack of ambition, lack of attitude and funds or whatever - which is complete distortion of the conversation that we had. It was very selective and inappropriate in any event. They were inappropriate observations to the press in relation to the club's activities in a private conversation that I had with him and David.
It was absolutely appalling in fact, what happened, specifically at such a delicate time in negotiations with Sol Campbell, whose main interest in relation to the club is to see some ambition in what's going on.
I asked George to come in at lunch time today so I could talk to him about it and understand what had happened, whether it was right or wrong or indifferent. His comments back to me were very aggressive, he was very defensive and didn't feel there were any problems in relation to that.
He was quite agressive in relation to the meeting that we'd had in any event and it was absolutely clear to me that he was in a situation where he felt there was no longer the need to defend himself in any capacity.
I thought long and hard about it, I am trying to build a big team here, I am trying to build a team where we are all cohesive from top to bottom. I know the timing is appalling, but the club dismissed him and he is no longer manager of the club.
We are really very lucky indeed to have David Pleat, whose been manager here before and has got a real Spurs history and has stepped into the breach before. He will help us through the next few games if we need and will look at all aspects of what is required to have a winning semi-final against Arsenal.
I did not anticipate this, despite a lot of pressure from many fans who were looking for change. I was not in a mood to make any change. George Graham had a contract which had to run, the club had a semi-final, there was no question of making any change in my mind and I haven't spoken to any other manager about this job here.
But we were rather pushed into a corner, we responded, and are lucky to have David Pleat. Now we're really going to think about the future - where we want to go, how we're going to get the heart and soul back in relation to the club.
Make no bones, there is huge ambition to make this club more successful on a consistent basis. There is also money available and it is wrong for people to say there is no money available. There is money available.
I have been quoting to both George and David an eight-figure sum that can be invested in players, but, where we are now, we're going to re-look, re-think and hopefully have success in the very near future.
Thank you, I look forward to making contact again with you soon. I will post regular updates on the website to keep you all informed with what's going on.