Neco Williams has become Nottingham Forest’s sixth signing of the summer, moving from Liverpool in a four-year deal said to be worth £17.5m, including add-ons.
The 21-year-old is a huge addition to Steve Cooper’s squad for the Premier League season, which kicks off in a month, replacing Djed Spence at right wing-back.
The Welsh international joined Liverpool at the age of six and worked with Cooper when he was academy manager at the Merseyside club. Having made 13 senior appearances under Jürgen Klopp, the Wrexham-born player joined Fulham on loan and made 14 appearances during the second half of last season.
Williams already knows Brennan Johnson from the Wales squad, and both will be expected to play at the World Cup in Qatar in November.
Williams said: “I’m really excited to join Nottingham Forest and to help this great club move forwards in the Premier League. 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 in the coming weeks.
“Having spoken to the Head Coach, there’s a huge amount of ambition being shown at the club and I can’t wait to join up with my new teammates and get ready for the challenge ahead.”
Cooper added: “Despite being only 21, Neco has established himself in the Wales starting XI. 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. We’re delighted to have him on board.”
The move means Forest have a complete defence now — with five centre-backs and two wing-backs — although Harry Toffolo and another right wing-back will no doubt arrive. Lewis O’Brien and Wayne Hennessey are also rumoured to be targets, and the club’s business will continue with midfield and attacking options.