This could be Nottingham Forest’s new boss if they sack Steve Cooper

Vieira is being lined up for an instant Premier League return by Nottingham Forest.

Patrick Vieira could make a quick Premier League return as the former Crystal Palace boss emerges as a favourite to take over at Nottingham Forest if the Premier League strugglers decide to part ways with existing manager Steve Cooper.

Crystal Palace sacked the Arsenal icon a fortnight ago after an alarming run of results saw the Eagles slide down the table, and slip into relegation threat.

The 46-year-old spent 20 months in charge at Selhurst Park, overseeing 74 matches, winning just 22 of them and leaving with a win ratio of 29%.

Meanwhile, Forest have failed to win any of their last seven games and are within a point of the relegation zone after Saturday’s controversial 1-1 draw against fellow strugglers Wolves.

Steve Cooper, who guided Forest’s unlikely promotion to the greener pastures of the Premier League last season, was compelled to totally overhaul his roster at the start of the season, and the club have recruited 30 players this season, including January arrivals, in order to give themselves the best possible chance to stay up.

The former Swansea manager was backed by the board when his team was reeling at the bottom of the table in October and was handed a new long-term contract.

And it looked to have done the trick with a significant uptick in form just after that, however should Forest lose against Leeds at Elland Road this season they would plummet to as low as 19th in the table, leaving Cooper on the knife-edge.

Owner Evangelos Marinakis is said to be concerned by the team’s performances and results.

Cooper is under pressure heading into tonight’s crunch six-pointer clash with Leeds United.

As per the reports, defeat the evening could spell the end of the road for Cooper at the City Ground and Forest would consider former Crystal Palace boss Vieira as a potential replacement in place for the final run-in, should a change be made.

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