Nottingham Forest complete double signing of Lewis O’Brien and Harry Toffolo

Nottingham Forest have completed the double signing of Huddersfield Town’s Lewis O’Brien and Harry Toffolo, bringing the Reds’ summer signings to 10 players

The £10m deal for the midfielder and defender brings Forest’s spending to almost £70m this summer, with several targets still to go.

O’Brien, formerly a target for Leeds United, has long been regarded as one of the best midfielders in the Championship. An industrious box-to-box player, the 23-year-old excels at ball-carrying, pressing and short-passing.

Having joined Huddersfield as an 11-year-old, the Colchester-born player made 131 appearances for the West Yorkshire club as well as spending the 2018/19 season on loan at Bradford City.

O’Brien said: “I’m delighted to join Nottingham Forest at such an exciting time. Having played at The City Ground last season I’ve experienced the atmosphere and when the opportunity came about to join Forest, it was a no-brainer for me.”

“You only have to look at Forest’s turnaround last season to see that something special is happening here at the moment, and after my first conversation with Steve Cooper it was obvious we both share the same vision and I’m buzzing to be part of the project.

“The fans turnout in their numbers week after week and they’ve waited so long for Premier League football. It’s now up to myself and the rest of the team to make sure we keep a smile on their faces.”

Cooper added: “We are delighted to secure the signing of Lewis O’Brien and we are thrilled to get this one over the line. He was one of the standout players in the Championship last season and possesses many of the qualities that we are looking for to strengthen the midfield unit.”

“At 23 years of age and with an abundance of experience already, I am confident Lewis will play a pivotal role next year and I look forward to watching him grow as a player over the coming months.”

Toffolo joined Huddersfield in 2020 from Lincoln City on a two-and-a-half year contract, with the club taking up a one-year extension earlier this year. The 26-year-old is comfortable at both left-back and wing-back.

Having joined Norwich City as a youth player he signed a professional contract in 2013 but only made two senior appearances for the East Anglia club, with loan spells at five different clubs. A short stint at Millwall was followed by a move to Lincoln in 2018.

Toffolo said: “I’m extremely delighted to be here, to be able to join a football club with this much stature is fantastic and to have the opportunity to play in the Premier League is something I couldn’t turn down.

“I’m excited, really looking forward to meeting the lads and we want to push forward in this division. We’ll push each other every day and we’ve got a fantastic squad being put together. I’m a player who wears his heart on his sleeve and I’m someone that will fight for the badge and for the team every single minute and now I can’t wait to get started.

Cooper added: “Harry is an excellent addition to the squad and adds quality and depth to a position that we were keen to strengthen this summer. We saw first-hand last season how effective Harry can be from wide positions and he’s also a player that wants to continue his improvement and we, as a coaching staff, look forward to helping him with that and we look forward to welcoming him to the group.”

The arrivals follow the signing of Welsh goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey last Friday, and the Costa Rican midfielder Brandon Aguilera on Sunday.

More players are still expected at the City Ground, with a midfielder, attacking midfielder and forward still required — with the club said to be in talks with Jesse Lingard.

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