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Jan 29, 2010

Cook's future in doubt at Manchester City

The future of outspoken Manchester City chief executive Gary Cook has been thrown into doubt following his high-profile and failed boasts, according to reports.

• Raynor: Cook tastes bitter reality

Cook's tenure has been marred by a series of public relation blunders and City's Abu Dhabi owners are growing increasingly concerned about the bad press and how it could affect the club's reputation amongst their peers.

Cook's latest gaffe came prior to the second leg of the Carling Cup semi-final against Manchester United when he was caught on camera telling fans that City would book a place at Wembley "not if, but when, we beat United again".

City lost 3-1 at Old Trafford and went out of the competition.

The chief executive also proclaimed that City were "without doubt, going to be the biggest and best football club in the world," a claim that annoyed the likes Real Madrid and Barcelona and prompted United boss Sir Alex Ferguson to label City "noisy neighbours".

Cook's position will come under discussion at the end of the season, according to The Guardian, as the owners have become worried by his leadership.

Cook was appointed by the previous owner, Thakshin Shinawatra, the deposed prime minister of Thailand who had been charged with corruption offences in his home country.

In his first major interview Cook was questioned about Shinawatra's dubious past and said: "Is he a nice guy? Yes. Is he a great guy to play golf with? Yes. Has he got the finances to run a club? Yes. Whether he's guilty of something over there, I can't worry too much about. Morally, I feel ­comfortable in this environment."

Cook also caused consternation when he claimed AC Milan "bottled it" after Kaka's £100 million transfer to Eastlands failed to go through.

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