BBC Sport Pundit Danny Murphy has claimed that Nottingham Forest were right to publicly back Steve Cooper in October. The Reds were linked with sacking their head coach after a 4-0 defeat away to Leicester but Evangelos Marinakis instead gave him a new deal.
Murphy has been discussing the battle to survive in his latest column for the Daily Mail. He actually thinks the Reds will remain in the Premier League; although he concedes that Wolves at home and Leeds away after the international break could be pivotal.
Cooper penned a three-and-a-half-year deal with the Reds, with his existing deal due to end in the summer. Forest did start to pick up some better results and after the World Cup, it appeared that staying in the Premier League would be a formality.
Now, however, the Reds are in a slump once more. Cooper hasn’t seen his team claim all three points for six matches and his team are just two points clear of the bottom three once again.
Murphy believes that the landscape will look clearer after the international break. He does, however, think Forest owner Marinakis deserves praise for his decision to place his faith in Cooper.
The BBC Sport pundit told the Daily Mail: “Nottingham Forest are the other club down there and they’ve been loyal to Steve Cooper. It was the right thing to do because without him they wouldn’t be in the Premier League anyway.
“I also think they will survive but it’s in the balance. They face Wolves and Leeds after the international break – we’ll know more after that.”
BBC Sport pundit Murphy says Forest were right to back Cooper
It’s admirable of Forest to stick with Cooper. It would have been easy for Marinakis to pull the trigger in October with Forest on ar un of just one win from the opening eight games of the campaign.
Murphy is a pretty respected pundit. He’s praised Forest a fair bit over the past year and it’s good to see he’s gone with the common sense approach here.
Forest would be foolish to get rid of Cooper at this stage of the season. In hindsight, relegation would be a disaster but Cooper has proved that he’s capable of producing the goods in the Championship.
Hopefully, it won’t come to that and Cooper’s team can help him out by claiming a few good results after the international break.