Nottingham Forest fans love Steve Cooper, but it could have all been so different for the Welshman had Amanda Staveley got her way.
Cooper’s coaching career has been hugely impressive.
The Welshman notably won the Under-17 World Cup with England back in 2017 and certainly impressed with Swansea City.
Just a year after losing the Championship play-off final with the Swans, Cooper succeeded in winning the big prize, taking Forest to the Premier League.
Cooper now stands on the brink of managing his first Premier League game, capping off an outstanding journey that started with a coaching role in the Wrexham setup.
Forest travel to take on Newcastle United on Saturday afternoon in their first Premier League game for 23 years.
It’s fascinating that Cooper’s first top-flight game as a manager comes against Newcastle, a club who wanted him just three years ago.
Amanda Staveley had been targeting a deal for Newcastle for a long time, but it just didn’t work out back in 2019.
Staveley and PIF are now running the show at St James’ Park and are showing signs of a promising future on Tyneside.
Staveley appears to be a big fan of Cooper, as The Sunday Mirror reported in August 2020 that Cooper would have been offered a job at Newcastle had the takeover gone through then.
Newcastle didn’t want Cooper to be their first-team manager though, instead eyeing him up for a coaching position in their Under-23 setup.
Cooper ended up becoming Swansea manager that year, putting him on a path that would lead him to becoming a Nottingham Forest hero.
Who knows when Cooper’s first-team management career would have started had that deal gone through, and who knows where Forest would be?
The way things have turned out is certainly perfect for Forest, and Cooper will now have a chance to show his coaching credentials right in front of Staveley this weekend.