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Premier League sack race – Could David Moyes or Steve Cooper be next?

The 2022/23 Premier League season has already been the most brutal when it comes to managerial sackings.

Twelve managers have been dismissed this term, with Patrick Vieira, Antonio Conte, Brendan Rodgers and Graham Potter all getting the boot in the last three weeks.

Of the 20 top-flight clubs, only nine have stuck by the managers they had at the beginning of the campaign.

It’s no surprise that Arsenal, Manchester City, Newcastle United, Manchester United, Brentford and Fulham have kept their bosses, having all enjoyed relatively successful seasons.

Meanwhile, Jurgen Klopp has enough credit in the bank to remain in charge at Liverpool.

But there are two outliers. Nottingham Forest are in 17th place and West Ham United are just two spots above – both sides remain outside the relegation zone on goal difference alone.

The end of the season is fast approaching, and both sides will be desperate to remain in the Premier League. Could they be the next to pull the trigger?

Steve Cooper

Steve Cooper’s debut season at Nottingham Forest was an undeniable success. After taking over a team at the bottom of the Championship, he guided them to promotion via the play-offs.

In usual circumstances, 17th place would be seen as a positive for a newly-promoted side. But Forest have taken a huge gamble on survival this season.

They were the busiest club in the league last summer, bringing in 23 new faces. They added a further seven in January, totalling over £150 million worth of investment.

Cooper’s men have picked up just three points from their last eight outings, and their next five games come against sides in the top half. It’s difficult to see where the next win will come from.

Despite this, owner Evangelos Marinakis has publicly backed the Welshman, dismissing reports that he is on the verge of the sack. Unless things get really desperate, we can expect Cooper to see out the season.

David Moyes

After qualifying for Europe in two consecutive seasons, West Ham are battling relegation again.

Those previous two years may have earned David Moyes the trust of the Hammers’ board, but their patience must be wearing thin.

A quick glance at their squad would tell you just how badly the Scotsman is underperforming – the likes of Declan Rice, Lucas Paqueta, Jarrod Bowen, Thilo Kehrer, Kurt Zouma, Angelo Ogbonna, Gianluca Scamacca, Emerson Palmieri, Manuel Lanzini, Pablo Fornals and Alphonse Areola have all featured for some of the world’s biggest national teams.

West Ham’s next two league games come against Fulham and Arsenal. If they fail to pick up points from these games, they will likely drop into the bottom three.

But Moyes’ future could be salvaged by their run in the Europa Conference League. The east Londoners face Belgian side Gent in the quarter-finals next week and will fancy themselves as one of the favourites to lift the trophy.

Relegation with the squad that West Ham have would be a monumental failure. But a first trophy since 1981 may just be enough to compensate.

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