Steve Cooper relishing standing up in tough times with Nottingham Forest

Steve Cooper file photo
(Image credit: Mike Egerton)

Nottingham Forest boss Steve Cooper is thriving on the pressure of leading his side through troubled waters.

Forest have endured a tough start to their Premier League return and sit in the bottom three after seven games, having lost their last four.

They visit Leicester on Monday in the clash of the two under-pressure managers, with Brendan Rodgers fearing the sack after a raft of defeats.

Cooper has only ever known good times at the City Ground, having taken over just over a year ago when Forest were bottom of the Championship before leading them to promotion.

But he says steering the club through tricky times means more to him as a leader.

“Actually managing something so important to me like this football club…it is like we have lost 20 games, it is so negative,” he said.

“But we do have to get out of this little run and I am open-minded enough and open enough to say it means more to me standing up and being a leader in difficult moments (than it does) in the good moments.

“I am the first person that everyone looks for and that is most important to me than anything else really.”

Cooper insists he will stick to his guns in his approach, though is also prepared for it to evolve.

“It is recognising the situation you are in, the context you are in and working even harder to improve and doing it the way you believe in and sticking to your principles, sticking to your plan and evolving and adapting and tweaking,” he said.

“You have to be open-minded to that but in the end sticking to what you really stand for.”

Forest will assess Morgan Gibbs-White (foot) and Scott McKenna (knee) ahead of the game. Orel Mangala, Moussa Niakhate and Omar Richards remain sidelined.

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