Nottingham Forest should sign Tom Heaton to replace Costel Pantilimon

Nottingham Forest slipped out of the Championship play-off positions and saw their five-match unbeaten run ended as they lost 1-0 against Preston North End at the City Ground on Saturday, and manager Aitor Karanka should sign Burnley’s Tom Heaton in January to solve one of his side’s biggest issues.

What’s the word, then?

Well, despite the fact that the Reds look to be promotion contenders under the Spaniard, many Forest fans still remain unconvinced by Costel Pantilimon between the sticks.

The 31-year-old is one of the tallest players in world football standing at 6ft 8in tall, and has played every minute of their league campaign to date.

However, the Romania international has struggled at times – including being beaten too easily by Luke Nchema’s cross for Lewis Moult’s close-range winner at the weekend – and back-up Luke Steele doesn’t appear to be providing much strong competition behind him.

Why sign Heaton?

The 32-year-old was the undisputed first-choice goalkeeper at Burnley just a couple of years ago, but now he potentially finds himself as Sean Dyche’s third-choice option at Turf Moor.

The England international found himself behind fellow Three Lions teammate Nick Pope before the 26-year-old suffered a serious shoulder injury in July, and he has since found himself behind summer addition Joe Hart in the pecking order with all of his minutes this term coming either in the Europa League or the Carabao Cup.

Heaton is highly experienced and has proved what a good stopper he is in the past though, and with a January exit – either on loan or permanently – looking to be a real possibility, Karanka must move in a deal that would significantly boost his team’s promotion hopes in the remaining months of the campaign.