Dave Bassett backs Frank Clark to help stabilise Forest

By Neil HeathBBC Nottingham
Frank Clark
Clark guided Forest to promotion to the Premier League in 1994

Former Nottingham Forest manager Dave Bassett believes Frank Clark is the man to help turn around the club's fortunes this season.

The Reds are currently managerless following Steve McClaren's resignation on Sunday and are hovering just one point above the Championship relegation zone.

Nigel Doughty has also resigned as chairman and will step down as soon as a suitable replacement can be found.

And Bassett, who managed the Reds from 1997-99, told BBC Radio Nottingham that Clark has the knowledge and expertise required to bring stability after a turbulent few months.

Bassett said: "He's played for the club, he's managed the club.

"If they [the club] had any brains they'd get Frank Clark on the board to sort out the manager and decide where the football's going."

Clark, who spent five years at Forest as a player from 1975, rebuilt the team when managing the side following relegation from the Premier League under Brian Clough in 1993.

He led the club to promotion in 1994, and the following season - against all expectations - guided the team to a third-place finish and a spot in Europe.

Bassett added: "Selecting the right guy needs a lot of consideration and it needs football people [like Frank Clark] to do that."

Clark is just one of a mind-boggling 60-odd names from the football world who have been linked with the City Ground vacancy.

Among them are the MK Dons boss Karl Robinson, former players Martin O'Neill and Roy Keane.

The manager that many fans want is the man McClaren replaced - Billy Davies.

Davies saved Forest from relegation after being appointed in January 2009 and then took them to two successive play-off campaigns.

However, it is unlikely the Scotsman would be considered by the Forest board after they sacked him in June.

And Pat Riddell, editor of Forest fan site 'Seat Pitch', agrees that re-appointing Davies would be a backwards step.

"Bringing him [Davies] back would be completely wrong," Riddell said.

"He was the right man at the right time, he restored our self-confidence and he re-established us in the Championship. But he was not a man for long-term building."

However, Forest captain Luke Chambers strongly believes Davies could be the man to restore both pride and confidence.

The defender told BBC East Midlands Today: "Billy is a tremendous manager and if that was an option then it should be explored.

"Billy brought us great success in the last few years without getting over the line. He knows what it takes to win in the Championship."

Another ex-Forest manager Paul Hart, is also in the frame.

Hart was sacked in 2004 after a poor run of results but remained a popular figure among fans due to his entertaining style of play.

It has been suggested that Hart could return as a technical director with another manager working beneath him.

Kenny Burns, a two-time European Cup winner with Forest, said: "[Hart] did a tremendous job at Forest. But I don't think he would come back."

Burns also said it was unlikely that former team-mate Martin O'Neill would be interested in the job.

He added: "He'd be the supporters' number one [but] Martin O'Neill is one of the top managers in the country. Would he come to a struggling Championship side? I don't know."

Editor of NFFC blog Ryan Brice said Forest need a young manager.

Brice explained: "With the advent of Financial Fair Play, logic dictates we need to cut our cloth accordingly.

"I think that means we need a young manager keen to develop a squad rather than someone who wants to buy or loan players."

The favourite to take over at Forest with the bookmakers is 31-year-old MK Dons boss Karl Robinson.

However, Robinson, who has established a reputation as one of the Football League's brightest young managers, has distanced himself from the job.

Whoever is appointed, he has to turn fortunes around quickly.

Nottingham Forest lie fourth from bottom of the Championship and still have not won a league game at home this season.

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