*Odds correct as of September 16, 2021
Steve Cooper saw his Nottingham Forest team beaten 4-0 at the King Power Stadium and it appears that the Welshman might be given his marching orders this week. Having engineered an unlikely promotion to the Premier League, the Midlands club enjoyed an encouraging start in the top-flight although they have recently suffered consecutive 3-2 home defeats before being demolished by the Foxes.
There is now speculation that Cooper will be replaced and there have been reports linking Rafael Benitez to Nottingham Forest. The Spaniard might be interested in helping the Tricky Trees stay in the top flight, with the club having signed an enormous number of players in the summer transfer window and clearly having plenty of ambition.
Chris Wilder is another potential candidate, having recently left Middlesbrough, while Sean Dyche is waiting for his next managerial opportunity after a largely successful ten-year spell in charge of Burnley.
Rafael Benitez is regarded as a high-calibre football manager and the Spaniard has a wealth of experience, having taken charge at clubs such as Valencia, Liverpool, Real Madrid and Inter. He was also a popular figure at Newcastle United and some media outlets have suggested that he could be in line to replace Steve Cooper.
The 62-year-old is clearly fond of England and his last job was an ill-fated reign at Everton, with Benitez being replaced by Frank Lampard after a sequence of poor performances. However, his three-year spell at St James' Park between 2016-2019 saw him gain adulation among the Toon Army after steering the Magpies back to the top flight and keeping them afloat.
Benitez is likely to command a huge salary to take a role at the City Ground and it would be a big challenge to keep them afloat after a sorry start. However, there are enough players in the squad to build a quality team including Jesse Lingard, Brennan Johnson and Morgan Gibbs-White.
If Nottingham Forest miss out on landing Rafael Benitez, it might be that Chris Wilder represents a Plan B. The 55-year-old has recently been sacked by Middlesbrough who languish near the foot of the Championship table, although he can still point to an impressive track record and in particular his achievements at Sheffield United.
Wilder engineered a double promotion to help lift the Blades from League One to the Premier League and perhaps he can make an impact at Forest. It is clear that the Midlands outfit need someone to bring stability and organisation, with an influx of players meaning that the first port of call is to find a settled team and a defined way of playing.
It is likely that Wilder will be interested in the position should it become vacant and he can point to the fact that he kept Sheffield United in the Premier League on a much tighter budget than the one that is available at the City Ground.
Nottingham Forest are rooted to the bottom of the Premier League table and perhaps club owner Evangelos Marinakis will call upon a candidate who has experience when it comes to steering a team out of the drop zone and into relative safety. Sean Dyche was able to achieve this regularly at Burnley before eventually being given his marching orders last term.
However, the Clarets still had a chance of survival when he left and the former Watford manager might see the Nottingham Forest job as an ideal opportunity to return to football management. After all, this is a big club and we're still at an early stage of the campaign, with the Tricky Trees still having the potential to avoid the drop.
Dyche's brand of football is generally regarded as pragmatic, although the supporters won't mind if the results improve and Forest are somehow able to avoid the bottom three come the end of the season.
Steven Gerrard dived into his first managerial role at Rangers and never looked back, with John Terry potentially about to do the same at Nottingham Forest. The former Chelsea central defender was part of Dean Smith's coaching team at Aston Villa and helped the Midlands club achieve promotion to the Premier League.
Terry is now a free agent and considering his first foray into football management. There is clearly an opportunity to make a name for oneself at Forest, although there's the possibility that Evangelos Marinakis will adopt a Watford-like stance, with managers being hired and fired with regularity.
A lack of experience is the obvious negative for the former England captain although it could be that he's able to command respect from the players and he would be able to assemble an experienced coaching team behind him.
It's entirely possible that Roy Keane has given up on the idea of football management. He's certainly having an easier life sitting in a Sky Sports studio and criticising Manchester United on a regular basis. However, the Irishman does have ties with Nottingham Forest.
The City Ground was where the midfielder made a name for himself and earned a big money move to Manchester United, while he has also been the assistant to Martin O'Neill during an ill-fated spell at the club. Perhaps he would be open to the idea of returning.