Nottingham Forest have made a number of new signings this summer as 22 players joined the newly-promoted Premier League squad over the last few months, with the club proving their ambition and intent to remain in the top flight by spending over £150m.
Steve Cooper will be thrilled to have so many high-quality new players at his disposal as he navigates the team through their campaign ahead, but he has already proven his loyalty to those that were part of the play-off challenge in the Championship that has ultimately delivered them to their current position.
Brennan Johnson, Scott McKenna, Joe Worrall, Sam Surridge and Steve Cook have still featured regularly over the Premier League campaign so far, and Cooper will be glad to have five of his key players in the dressing room to continue that fighting spirit amongst all the new recruits.
Johnson, in particular, has been the linchpin in the successful rise of Forest over the last 12 months and has continued to be a stand-out performer in the team in their difficult start in the Premier League.
Despite currently being 19th in the league table, Cooper is surely delighted Johnson has continued to be a constant threat in the attacking third for the Tricky Trees with the young talent currently joint top goal-scorer on two alongside Surridge this season.
Johnson was named the Championship’s Young Player of the Season for his contributions, scoring 16 goals, delivering ten assists and creating 15 big chances over 46 league appearances and has already registered a total of 38 goals over his short career so far.
The 21-year-old talent has been the recipient of high praise for his incredible displays with Wales manager Robert Page labelling Johnson “wonderful” whilst the Forest boss has given credit to the young player who he claims has the “right attitude” in the team:
“What you see on a daily basis is a young player who is never late – a player who comes in with the right attitude and works hard in training.
“He wants to do extra and review how he can improve his game. He’s a local boy and is very proud to play for the football club.”
The Wales international who is a product of the Forest academy has cost the club absolutely nothing to develop but following his incredible season in the second tier began to attract attention from established Premier League clubs including Newcastle United, Everton and Leicester City and the player was reportedly valued at up to £25m.
With that being said, Nottingham Forest have struck gold with Johnson and will be hoping that they can keep him at the club for a very long time with his contract currently not expiring until 2026.