McCarthy close to bagging Forest job
MICK McCARTHY appears to be closing in on the Nottingham Forest manager's job after the club's new Kuwaiti owners confirmed that they had opened talks with the former Republic of Ireland boss.
The 53-year-old will cut short his holiday in Portugal to return to hold face-to-face talks with the club hierarchy.
One of the new owners, Abdulaziz Al-Hasawi, revealed that the former Wolves and Sunderland manager is one of the leading contenders to replace Steve Cotterill, who was sacked last Thursday.
"Mick is one of the people we are talking to, but there are others. If he meets our requirements, we would be honoured to work with Mick," Al-Hasawi said.
"It is very important for the manager to have good knowledge of this league and the teams involved in it.
"They must also have an understanding when it comes to working with a club and developing it.
"We are looking for somebody with a strong CV, with a lot of experience. We want somebody who has good, strong character to come in and inspire the players."
Roy Keane, Glenn Hoddle and Darren Ferguson are also believed to be in the running, but former Nottingham Forest star Garry Birtles backed odds-on favourite McCarthy to succeed if handed the reins.
"Mick has a proven track record at this level, he knows how to win promotion from the Championship and he does things in the right way," Birtles said.
"He has an eye for a player and he knows how to get the best out of people. He can take unpolished diamonds from the lower leagues and turn them into players who are capable of performing at the highest level.
"I can see why Forest would go for him and, if he is appointed, I would be optimistic about the future."