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One winner and one loser at Nottingham Forest as Chris Hughton completes first summer signing

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Nottingham Forest have completed their first signing of the summer, with goalkeeper Ethan Horvath arriving on a three-year deal.

The Reds have swooped to seal the signing of Horvath, whose four-year spell at Club Brugge came to an end last season upon the expiry of his contract.

The 26-year-old made 64 appearances for Brugge and has also made seven appearances for the USA national team, saving a penalty in extra-time in their 3-2 Nations League final win over Mexico last month.

Horvath has now made the move to England for the first time in his career, penning a three-year deal on Trentside.

It was a signing that surprised many Forest fans, as on the face of it, the goalkeeping position is one that doesn’t need to be strengthened.

Here, then, we take a look at one winner and one loser at Forest as Chris Hughton adds his first new face to his squad…

Winner: Brice Samba

On the face of it, this signing doesn’t bode well for Brice Samba. Horvath is 26, he has signed a three-year deal, and will be keen to establish himself as Forest’s number one.

But the addition of Horvath could also prove to be beneficial for Samba in some ways, with genuine competition needed for the Congolese shot-stopper.

Since joining Forest, Aro Muric, Jordan Smith and Abdoulaye Diallo have failed to really push Samba and prove to Sabri Lamouchi or Chris Hughton that they deserve to be number one.

This hasn’t really affected Samba’s performances, with the 27-year-old amassing 13 clean sheets in 2019/20 and 14 clean sheets last season.

But every player needs competition to get the best out of them, and having someone of Horvath’s pedigree could motivate him to perform even better. He would only reap the benefits if he improved.

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Loser: Jordan Smith

Smith’s attitude in the last few years has been commendable.

The academy graduate’s most regular game time at Forest came in 2017/18, making 29 appearances in the Championship.

But the 26-year-old has made three appearances in the Championship in the last three seasons, featuring only once in the league last season.

Smith is Samba’s number two, but the arrival of Horvath pushes him down the pecking order. With his contract up at the end of this coming season, the chances of him being offered an extended stay appear slim.


Nottingham-based journalist who regularly covers Nottingham Forest home and away.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: One winner and one loser at Nottingham Forest as Chris Hughton completes first summer signing

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