Sunday 21 July 2019

Martin O'Neill and Roy Keane set for reunion at Forest


Martin O'Neill and Roy Keane. Photo: SPORTSFILE
Martin O'Neill and Roy Keane. Photo: SPORTSFILE

Daniel McDonnell and John Percy

Martin O'Neill is ready to bring in Roy Keane as part of his managerial team at their former club Nottingham Forest.

Just two months after his departure from the Ireland hotseat, O'Neill has agreed to succeed Aitor Karanka and returns to the club he left in 1981 as a double European Cup winner.

Some doubts initially surrounded whether the 66-year-old would opt to reunite with his former Ireland assistant given the disputes involving Keane during a turbulent 2018.

However, Keane is believed to be part of the package with the Corkman spotted leaving the offices of the club's owners in London.

The former Manchester United captain joined Forest from Cobh Ramblers in 1990 and, like O'Neill, worked under Brian Clough.

Steve Guppy is also expected to be part of O'Neill's team with confirmation of the make-up of the managerial ticket expected in advance of Saturday's league match with Bristol City.

O'Neill emerged as the Championship club's preferred candidate on a shortlist which also included former Fulham manager Slavisa Jokanovic and Carlos Carvalhal. Jokanovic had been the initial No 1 target but his salary demands, and O'Neill's enthusiasm for the post during talks, ensured the Ulsterman jumped to the front of the queue.

Forest parted company with Karanka on Friday and are currently ninth in the table, four points off the play-offs. The Spaniard opted to walk away from the club after repeated suggestions that his position was under threat.

O'Neill will become the club's 11th full-time boss since 2011. Greek shipping magnate Evangelos Marinakis has been in control of Forest since May 2017.

Irish Independent

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