Berliner Tageszeitung - Free-spending Forest sign Welsh international defender Williams

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Free-spending Forest sign Welsh international defender Williams

Free-spending Forest sign Welsh international defender Williams
Free-spending Forest sign Welsh international defender Williams / Foto: © AFP

Newly promoted Premier League side Nottingham Forest agreed to pay a joint club record fee of £17 million ($20 million) for Welsh international defender Neco Williams from Liverpool on Monday.


The 21-year-old signed a four year contract with the two-time European Cup winners.

He is their sixth signing since they gained promotion to the Premier League for the first time in 23 years after beating Huddersfield in the Championship play-off.

"Forest are a club with incredible history and the City Ground is a very special venue that I can't wait to experience in full voice," said Williams.

"I'm really excited to join Forest and to help this great club move forwards in the Premier League.

"Having spoken to the head coach (Steve Cooper), there's a huge amount of ambition being shown and I can't wait to join up with my new team-mates and get ready for the challenge ahead," he added.

The fee for the 21-times capped defender equals that Forest reportedly paid Bundesliga side Union Berlin for Nigerian international striker Taiwo Awoniyi.

Awoniyi was also at Liverpool before moving to Union. Unlike Williams he did not make a first team appearance.

Williams featured for Liverpool in the Champions League group stage last term before being sent on loan to Fulham, whom he helped to gain promotion to the Premier League.

Williams also played an influential role this year as Wales qualifying for their first World Cup finals in 64 years.

"Despite being only 21, Neco has established himself in the Wales starting XI," said Cooper.

"He's played in the Premier League, the Champions League and in World Cup qualifiers in the last 12 months and he is a very talented right back.

"We believe that he's got an incredibly high ceiling and that he can play a huge role for us at Nottingham Forest in our return to the Premier League."

Williams is Forest's second signing in as many days. Another defender Omar Richards joined from Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich for a reported £10 million on Sunday.

Goalkeeper Dean Henderson, Moussa Niakhate, Giulian Biancone are the other new faces in Cooper's squad as they seek to adapt to the Premier League and avoid the fate of so many new boys in going straight back down.

O. Karlsson--BTZ