February 22, 2024

Wayne Rooney under pressure as axed Prem boss among Birmingham options | Football | Sport

Rooney, 38, was only appointed at St. Andrew’s in mid-October, but has won just two of 13 matches in charge. Since the last of those, the 1-0 away win against Cardiff City on December 13, Birmingham have conceded three goals in each of their next three games.

Most recently, they lost 3-1 on Boxing Day to fellow strugglers Stoke City, who had just appointed Steven Schumacher as their new head coach after opting to sack Alex Neil earlier this month. That result saw Stoke leapfrog Birmingham, who now sit 19th in the Championship after 24 matches.

Before appointing Rooney after surprisingly sacking head coach John Eustace, the club were sixth in the league, occupying the final playoff position going into the October international break. Two-and-a-half months on, only three places separate them from the relegation zone.

Their drop-off has been so dramatic that The Sun reports Cooper tops their list of replacements for Rooney. During the 2021-22 season, he took over a Forest when they were in even more dire straights, sat bottom of the Championship, and led them to the Premier League via the playoffs within eight months.

Cooper then kept the club in the top flight last season before a run of one win in 13 matches during this campaign saw him replaced at the City Ground by Nuno Espirito Santo. However, Birmingham are not the only club said to be keen on the out-of-work head coach as Crystal Palace are another club widely reported to be keen on keeping Cooper in the Premier League as their eventual replacement for Roy Hodgson.

Therefore, Birmingham may have to look elsewhere if they decide to move on from Rooney. Reims head coach Will Still could be another option after recently holding talks with Sunderland over their head coaching vacancy before former Rangers manager Michael Beale got the job.


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