What the papers say: Wolverhampton Wanderers v Nottingham Forest

Nottingham Forest and Wolverhampton Wanderers played out at 1-1 draw at Molineaux, as the visitors recovered from their midweek defeat at Fulham. Here’s what the national newspapers had to say

The Guardian

There was a long wave to the away end at Molineux and it was greeted with raucous chants of “There’s only one Stevie Cooper” but whether those fans will get another chance to celebrate their manager in person is unknown. Cooper changed the personnel, style and fortunes of Nottingham Forest to secure a draw at Wolves after four straight defeats, although it might not be enough to earn another stay of execution.

Cooper, who was under scrutiny coming into the match, made seven changes from the team that lost 5-0 to Fulham in midweek and implemented a different formation, selecting a 3-5-2 after using 4-2-3-1 at Craven Cottage, although did not include a recognised striker. When a manager is unsure of his best XI, it is always a concern and instability on the pitch is rarely a recipe for success, especially when the cook is guessing the ingredients, but it provided a fighting response from those selected.

“That’s the last thing it was,” Cooper said when asked if he was waving goodbye to the fans. “I was saying ‘Thank you for your support, you’ve spent a lot of money this week, you’ve dragged the players through challenging times in the game and safe journey home’. I am just full of gratitude.”

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2023/dec/09/wolves-nottingham-forest-premier-league-match-report

The Times

Nottingham Forest delivered the fight that Steve Cooper had been asking for but after they squandered another lead it has done little to relieve the pressure on him.

This was last-roll-of-the-dice territory for Cooper after a 5-0 hammering away to Fulham in midweek. He made seven changes as he looked to stop the rot after four defeats in a row had left him on the verge of the sack, and when they took the lead in the 14th minute it looked as though it was a decision that would pay off.

The away side had started on the front foot and when Harry Toffolo headed in Neco Williams’s cross at the far post the away end again made their feelings clear. There were only 35 seconds on the clock when the chants in support of Cooper began, and they were louder and more sustained with Forest a goal up. At the end he waved to the fans as he applauded them for their support, but denied it was a goodbye.

Read more: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/wolves-vs-nottingham-forest-cunha-keeps-pressure-on-steve-cooper-bpb9vtlcm

The Telegraph

Steve Cooper’s future at Nottingham Forest remains on a knife-edge but his players are fighting for him and the fans at Molineux chanted his name from start to finish.

Cooper axed seven players from the 5-0 debacle at Fulham on Wednesday and reshaped his formation to be rewarded with a battling performance, which could alleviate some of the scrutiny on his position as head coach.

With former Wolves manager Julen Lopetegui and ex-Eintracht Frankfurt head coach Oliver Glasner understood to have already been sounded out, Forest have been considering making a change in technical area.

Cooper has secured just one win from 12 matches yet this was a vastly improved performance and he may now be given a stay of execution for Friday’s visit of Tottenham.

Owner Evangelos Marinakis’s son, Miltiadis, was in the directors’ box here to witness Cooper waving farewell to the away fans and patting his heart after the final whistle.

Read more: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2023/12/09/wolves-vs-nottingham-result-forest-steve-cooper-fans-chant/

The Independent

Nottingham Forest stopped the rot with a battling point at Wolves to give Steve Cooper an early birthday present in the fight for his job.

The under-fire Forest boss, who turns 44 on Sunday, saw his side scrap to a deserved 1-1 draw to end a run of four straight defeats.

Harry Toffolo headed in the opener only for Matheus Cunha to level in the first half at Molineux.

Toffolo missed a fine second-half chance to win it but Forest at least claimed a first away point in two months.

It kept them 16th, five points above the Premier League’s relegation zone, while Wolves sit 12th after stretching their unbeaten home run to six.

Read more: https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/steve-cooper-nottingham-forest-julen-lopetegui-premier-neco-williams-b2461392.html

The Mail

Steve Cooper gambled with seven changes. Though he didn’t hit the jackpot, he’ll hope a point gives him another roll of the dice with Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis.

The way the Forest manager went over at the end to applaud the away fans who sang his name throughout may have looked like an emotional farewell, but he denied it.

‘No, that’s the last thing it was,’ he said. ‘I was saying thank you for your support, you have spent a lot of money this week and dragged players through challenging times in this game.

‘I’m full of gratitude. They were so noisy it didn’t feel like an away game.’

Even so, Cooper is pragmatic enough to the know the decision is in Marinakis’ hands rather than the supporters.

Read more: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-12845029/Wolves-1-1-Nottingham-Forest-Premeir-League-2023-24-Result.html

The Sun

Steve Cooper must wait to see if he gets an unwanted birthday present – even though Nottingham Forest stopped the rot.

The Forest boss was tipped to get the sack if his side had lost to Wolves and suffered a fifth successive defeat.

But despite Forest producing a battling display to earn their first away point in two months, Cooper went over to the travelling fans at the final whistle and waved to them in what could be seen as a goodbye gesture.

Cooper turns 44 on Sunday – and a P45 might still be on its way.

Whether the display will be enough to pull Cooper from the brink remains to be seen.

Owner Evangelos Marinakis was thought to be ready to wield the axe after Wednesday’s 5-0 mauling at Fulham.

Read more: https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/24981508/wolves-vs-nottingham-forest-live-score-premier-league-updates/

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