Nottingham Forest’s recruitment is something that largely sparks debate and in large there has been a good reason for that.

The Reds added 14 new players to their ranks in the summer, despite the team narrowly missing out on the play-offs last season.

An extraordinary turnover of players has seen plenty of people criticise the club’s transfer policy, particularly in the last 10 years.

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Forest have made some good additions over the years, however, to go with a fair few players who haven’t worked out.

It has been proven over the years that a fortune doesn’t need to be spent in order to find a decent formula.

With that in mind, Nottingham Forest news looked at five of the best free transfers to have checked in at the City Ground since 2010.

Andy Reid – (2011)

Steve McClaren didn’t get much right during his time on Trentside but signing Reid was certainly a tick in the right box.

It has to be said, the former academy star didn’t hit the ground running when he first arrived.

He had struggled for form at Blackpool but once he got himself fit he became top quality and proved an integral part of the team.

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Dorus De Vries – (2013)

Was forced to wait patiently for a chance in the Forest team having originally signed to act as backup.

During Stuart Pearce’s time at the club, he came into his own and at times single-handedly kept Forest in games.


In total he played 63 times for the club, keeping 15 clean sheets.

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David Vaughan – (2014)

The midfielder arrived after leaving Sunderland where he had featured in the Premier League for the Black Cats.

In truth, Vaughan is perhaps the pick of the bunch when it comes to free transfers in the last decade.

The experienced performer did suffer with injuries but proved an integral part of the Forest team.

Vaughan made 111 appearances for the Reds and moved to Notts County after his departure.

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Ben Watson – (2017)

The experienced holding midfielder player was signed by Aitor Karanka and his class was there for all to see from the off.

His form last season saw him as an outside contender for the Player of the Season away with Sabri Lamouchi calling him the brains of the team.

Despite have a period where he was out of favour, Watson still played 80 times for Forest and nearly led the club to the play-offs in his final season.

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Sammy Ameobi – (2019)

Some supporters couldn’t grasp why a player who couldn’t cut it at a relegated Championship team would be a decent signing for Forest.

Ameobi proved a solid addition last season and is still very much an important part of Chris Hughton’s squad.

Last season he scored six goals and registered nine assists, proving the theory of his critics badly wrong.

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