15 July 2024

15 famous Nottingham Forest fans in net worth order

Nottingham Forest can reflect on a job well done now the transfer window has closed.

The Reds have a stronger squad than the one they had at the start of the summer. And that is despite losing academy graduate Brennan Johnson to Tottenham Hotspur.

The arrival of midfielder Ibrahim Sangare made plenty of observers sit up and take note, with Forest having fought off some stiff competition to land him. A World Cup winner was also added to the ranks, in Gonzalo Montiel.

All in all, the Reds have come a long way from when they were bringing in the likes of Nicolao Dumitru and Joao Teixeira. Identifying the right signings is far from an exact science – clubs up and down the land have brought in just as many flops as they have players who have shone. And Forest are no different.

In recent times, the Reds have generally done some good business in the market. But they also have a hall of shame; players who were nothing short of disasters.

We have picked out the 20 worst signings to ever pull on the shirt. A subjective list, you may disagree on our picks, but it is hard to argue any of the players below can be considered a success for Forest.

Plenty narrowly escaped the cut. Dishonourable mentions go to Andy Cole, Dean Saunders, Gary Holt, Gary Jones, Joao Teixeira, Nuno Da Costa and Lica among many others.

20 Jim Baxter

A brilliant, naturally gifted player, but his time at the City Ground was a huge disappointment. The Scotland international arrived in 1967 at the age of 28 when he should have been in his prime.

He was supposed to take Forest to the next level, but he left after 49 games, as his career fell apart due to his heavy drinking problem. He returned to finish his career at Rangers, but retired at 31 and died too young, at 61, from cancer.

A troubled character, he was also a gambling addict. A massive disappointment, but so gifted it would be unfair to put him higher up the list.

19 Gino Padula

The left-back was a cult hero at QPR before joining Forest on a free transfer in 2005. He signed a two-year deal, but was dropped by Gary Megson in the September of his first season at the club after making just four appearances.

Padula played once in 2006/07 before being released at the end of the campaign. He joined French club Montpellier before ending his career with Columbus Crew in the MLS. He remained in Ohio, where he runs his own coaching company.

18 Neil Harris

Harris was a Millwall legend when he joined Forest in 2004. However, he flopped Trentside, with his only goal in 37 appearances coming in a 4-0 win at Chesterfield in September 2006.

17 Marco Pascolo

The Swiss international was a £750,000 signing from Italian side Cagliari in the summer of 1997. He began the following season as the first-choice keeper, but was soon dropped and only played six times before joining FC Zurich.

16 Kevin Gomis

Gomis arrived from Nice after breaking into their team when their four first-choice central defenders (two of whom only filled in in that position) were injured. However, he was seen as a decent talent, according to French Football Weekly.

It didn’t pan out for him at Forest, though. He arrived on loan in January 2014 for the rest of the season but only played once when the club realised they’d made a terrible mistake. He returned to Nice and eventually joined Dundee.

15 Nikola Jerkan

The central defender joined Forest from Real Oviedo at the age of 31 for £1m in 1996, on the back of a solid tournament for Croatia at Euro 96. However, he only made 14 appearances as Forest were relegated from the Premier League that season.

He then joined Rapid Vienna on a season-long loan before returning to Forest for the 1998/99 campaign, when he did not play a single game. He joined Belgian side Charleroi in 1999 on a free transfer before retiring a year later.

14 Danny Sonner

Sonner was a much travelled central midfielder when he joined Forest in his early 30s. He started 19 times in the 2003/04 season before joining Peterborough on a free transfer. A player of limited ability but did give his all.

13 Nicky Eaden

Eaden was signed by Gary Megson in 2005 and came to be seen as typical of Megson’s style of play. As such, he became a figure of derision among Reds fans in a poor team.

The right-back left on loan for Lincoln for two stints before being released, when he joined Halesowen. He went on to become a coach at the likes of Leicester, Coventry and Rotherham.

12 Scott Dobie

The hardworking striker had done well for West Brom before joining Forest in a £525,000 move from Millwall in February 2005. Unfortunately, he couldn’t hit the proverbial barn door, scoring three times in 41 games before joining Carlisle in January 2008 for a nominal fee.

11 Salvatore Matrecano

What Sabri Lamouchi made of Nottingham Forest fans' display at City Ground  - Nottinghamshire Live

The former Under-21 international joined Forest from Perugia as the other half of a £2.4m double deal with winger Gianluca Petrachi, who is perhaps lucky not to be on this list. A ligament injury scuppered his progress at Forest as the centre-half played only 13 times. His contract was terminated in 2001 as he returned to his homeland, eventually joining Benevento.

Matrecano also played for Foggia, Napoli, Udinese and Parma. He moved into management with stints at lower league sides Foligno and former club Perugia.

10 Gary Megson

A manager who endured a terrible time at Forest. However, his stint as a player was even worse. Signed from Sheffield Wednesday in 1984, Brian Clough soon realised he had made an error, saying he “couldn’t trap a bag of cement”. He left five months later without playing a first-team game.

9 Kevin James

The right winger was signed from Gillingham in 2004 and made seven appearances in his first season. He played once more in the following season but spent most of his time away from the City Ground on loan at Boston, Yeovil, Grimsby and Swindon before joining Woking on a free transfer in 2007.

8 Nicolao Dumitru

Made only 12 appearances for Forest after joining on loan from Napoli at the start of the 2016/17. A headless chicken, he has struggled to find a home since. He has added Spanish teams Alcoron and Gimnastic, Italian side Livorno, Romanian outfits Metan Medias and UTA Arad, South Korea’s Suwon Samsung Bluewings and Bnei Sakhnin, in Israel, to the list of clubs he has played for.

7 Khaled Al Rashidi

Would it be cynical to imagine former owner Fawaz Al Hasawi might have influenced the arrival of his fellow Kuwaiti? Forest tried to sign the goalkeeper in 2013, but he was refused a work permit. Was granted one a year later but failed to play before leaving at the end of the 2014/15 season.

6 Robert Rosario

Rosario was Brian Clough’s last signing as Forest manager. He arrived late in the 1992/93 season, which famously and sadly ended in relegation from the Premier League. He arrived for £400,000 from Coventry but it was a misguided move from legendary boss Clough. Was just not in the same class as the likes Teddy Sheringham, who was with Forest year before, or Stan Collymore, who arrived relatively soon after him.

5 Eugene Dadi

What Sabri Lamouchi made of Nottingham Forest fans' display at City Ground  - Nottinghamshire Live

Dadi was a cult hero at Tranmere but he just could not cut it at Forest. Yet another Gary Megson signing, Dadi arrived on a free transfer in 2005. He failed to score in six appearances and was loaned to Notts County. He never played for Forest again and reportedly went on to become an actor in Austria briefly, before owning a fashion label, obviously.

4 Djamel Abdoun

The left winger was signed for around £1.5m in July 2013 from Olympiacos. He had 11 caps for Algeria and at 27 should have been in his prime. Unfortunately he turned out to be a show pony, with his best game coming against a terribly patched-up West Ham team in the FA Cup.

Stuart Pearce told him he could go, but Forest had trouble getting rid. In the end, his contract was cancelled and he joined Veria in Greece.

3 Rafik Djebbour

You’ve got to go some to be worse than Abdoun, but he managed it. Like his fellow Algerian, Djebbour’s attitude was questioned after he arrived in January 2014 from Olympiacos.

He scored on his debut against Yeovil but only played seven more times without further goals. Djebbour’s contract was terminated at the end of the season.

2 Moreno Mannini

Mannini was 37 when he joined Forest in August 1999 on a free transfer from Sampdoria, where he was a former team-mate of David Platt. The central defender is a Sampdoria legend, having made almost 400 appearances for them.

However, he played only 11 times for Forest before leaving on a free transfer at his own request in January 2000 after failing to settle in England. He returned to his first club Imolese to see out his playing days, retiring at the end of the 1999/2000 season with 10 senior caps to his name.

1 Andrea Silenzi

Silenzi was the first Italian to play in the Premier League after joining Forest for £1.8m from Torino in the summer of 1995. He had pedigree, having a decent goal record for Torino and having spent a year as a teammate of Diego Maradona’s at Napoli. The target man had been capped once by his country the year before, but was an absolute disaster for Forest, scoring twice in 20 appearances, with both goals coming in cup competitions.

Silenzi joined Venezia on loan in the 1996/97 season and it has been widely reported he refused to return to Forest from his loan spell. His contract was then torn up as he went back to Italy with Reggina. Silenzi would go on to return briefly to Torino either side of spells for Ravenna before retiring in 2003.

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