Forest swing axe with ex-Tottenham boss in line to replace Cooper as manager


Nottingham Forest have sacked manager Steve Cooper and seem set to bring in former Wolves and Tottenham boss Nuno Espirito Santo as his replacement.

The 44-year-old has paid the price on Tuesday for a run of just one win in 13 English Premier League games, which has left Forest just five points above the relegation zone. 

On Friday they suffered their fifth defeat in six league games in a 2-0 home loss to Tottenham Hotspur.

The 49-year-old Portuguese is the preferred candidate to take over at the City Ground and has met club officials ahead of a possible appointment. 

He has been out of work since leaving Saudi Pro League club Al-Ittihad in November. Now he appears set for a return to the Premier League two years after his sacking from an ill-fated four-month stay at Spurs. 

Cooper has had the support of the Forest fans after taking them from the bottom of the Championship to promotion and then EPL survival last season. 

It was fan power that saved him from the sack last term, but after another summer of heavy investment from owner Evangelos Marinakis, the Greek businessman has lost patience. 

Forest host Bournemouth in a crucial league clash on Saturday before festive fixtures against Newcastle and Manchester United. 

Marinakis was eyeing a top-half finish this season but after a solid start to the campaign, results have not followed and they Forest have won just once since beating Chelsea at the start of September. 

Nottingham Forest confirms the departure of head coach Steve Cooper.

Everyone at Nottingham Forest would like to thank Steve for his superb contribution to our football club and wish him well in his future endeavours.

— Nottingham Forest (@NFFC) December 19, 2023

Cooper has kept his dignity following frenzied speculation surrounding his position. He leaves the City Ground a hero after becoming the man to end Forest’s 23-year exile from the top flight when he guided them to promotion in 2022. 

A difficult first year followed and Cooper’s job was under continual threat before a late-season rally lifted them to 16th place.

Marinakis said: “Everyone at Nottingham Forest would like to thank Steve for his superb contribution to our football club.

“His achievement in guiding Forest back to the Premier League will undoubtedly remain an iconic moment in the club’s history.”

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