Nottingham Forest: Who will be the club's new manager?
The Al-Hasawi family took control at Nottingham Forest last week and got to action straight away by relieving Steve Cotterill of his role as manager, sparking a media frenzy over who will be the latest man to take charge at the City Ground.
The new owners say they want an iconic name in place and have a three to five year business plan in place aimed at guiding Forest back into the Premier League. No pressure there then, but Forest deserve to be dining at the top table. Despite spending a number of years in the wilderness, Forest are a huge club with a fantastic fanbase and an illustrious history.
But who is the right man to get Forest back into the top flight and rubbing shoulders with the likes of Arsenal, City and United? Unsurprisingly for a job of this size, there has been no shortage in potential suitors. Roy Keane, Glenn Hoddle, Harry Redknapp and Mick McCarthy have all been linked with the vacant post, but who will be tasked with getting Forest promoted?
Here is my assessment on the main runners and riders.
The former Wolves and Sunderland boss has been installed as the bookies favourites over the weekend but I wouldn't exactly call him an iconic boss, would you? McCarthy has a great track record in getting teams promoted from the Championship, which will appeal to the new owners, but his record in the Premier League is less impressive. He may not have Forest playing expansive and attacking football, but it would be a winning brand that could get them back into the top flight. Would you be happy with McCarthy in the dugout?
Now the former Spurs, Monaco and Chelsea midfielder is an iconic figure but he has been out of management for the past six years - is he really the man Forest need right now? As a player Hoddle was a genius. And his managerial career started brightly too, guiding Swindon Town to the Premier League. He then took over at Chelsea, where he laid the foundations for Vialli and co to build on, before he became England boss. Hoddle led England to France 98 but some controversial comments in the Press forced the FA to give him the boot. Since then his career has been in decline. Spells at Southampton, Spurs and Wolves all ended without any success. In fact, Hoddle has never managed to win any silverware as a manager.
The Peterborough United boss has been strongly linked with a move to the City Ground but you have to question whether the Al-Hasawi family have their Fergusons mixed up. If they are in the pursuit of an iconic boss then they should be after Sir Alex, not his son Darren. That might be a bit mean though as Darren is a fine manager in his own right. He led the Posh from League Two to the Championship before being lured away by Preston North End. Unfortunately life at Deepdale didn't go to plan and he was back at London Road 12 months later. The Posh will be playing Forest this season, but which dugout will Fergie be in? Can he learn from the mistakes made at Preston?
Now this could be the iconic figure the new owners have been talking about. A former Forest midfielder, Keano is a legendary Premier League player who won it all. The Irishman was the driving force in the United midfield and spurred them on for every big game. Unfortunatley Keano has been a different beast as a manager. He was an immediate hit at Sunderland as he led them out of the Championship and kept the Black Cats up at the first attempt. However, in his third season the fiery character walked. He ended up at Ipswich Town but was unable to transform the Tractor Boys into a top fligth outfit. Keane worked under the legendary Brian Clough and knows all about the demands and expectations of the Forest fans, but would he want to take the job?
The former Aberdeen and Manchester United star was a winner north and south of the border but his standing in the game has sunk following his unsuccessful spell at Middlesbrough. Strachan was given money to spend at the Riverside but his obsession of buying SPL players ended in disaster after just one year. The tenacious Scot has played under some great managers and has bags of experience. but despite a trophy-ladden spell in Scotland with Glasgow Celtic Strachan has yet to win a trophy as a manager in England.
Now Keegan really is an iconic figure. As a player he was majestic and Keegan was just as good as a manager. He rescued Newcastle in his first spell as manager and in 1996 Keegan should have led Newcastle to the Premier League title. The free flowing football Newcastle were playing was astounding and thoroughly deserved to be successful. Unfortunately we all know how that race panned out. However, if you need a team to win promotion then Keegan is your man. Newcastle, Fulham and Manchester City have all reached the Premier League under his stewardship and Forest could do far worse than hiring Keegan.
Other names in the frame include former Chelsea chiefs Luiz Felipe Scolari and Gianluca Vialli, Diego Maradona and former Birmingham and Aston Villa boss Alex McLeish. However, who would you like to see in the Forest dugout? Whatever your views we'd love to hear from you.