One thing that is an immense source of pride for Nottingham Forest is the club’s academy, which has produced a number of stars over the years.

In recent times, it has proved a very successful financial outlet, but fans take great joy in watching academy nurtured players pull on the shirt.

The adage ‘if you’re good enough, you’re old enough’ has proved true on a number of occasions, especially in front of goal.

As such, here are the youngest goalscorers to find the net while playing in Garibaldi Red.

Andy Reid Forest
SHEFFIELD – MAY 15: Andy Reid of Nottingham Forest celebrates scoring his teams second goal during the Nationwide League Division One play-off semi-final second leg match between Sheffield United and Nottingham Forest held on May 15, 2003 at Bramall Lane, in Sheffield, England. Sheffield United won the match 4-3 after extra-time, winning the tie 5-4 on aggregate. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

5. Andy Reid (18 years, four months)

A club icon, Reid burst onto the scene in some style at Forest and remains one of the most popular players this millennium.

With a genuine wand of a left boot, Reid was sensational in his younger days as a winger and it was clear he had top flight promise.

His first goal for the club came in a 2-0 win over Sheffield United on November 29 2000 and was the first of many.

In two different spells, Reid scored 42 goals in 290 appearances for the club and is one of the finest graduates the academy has had.

Craig Westcarr Forest
NOTTINGHAM – JULY 31: Craig Westcarr of Nottingham Forest in action during the pre-season friendly between Nottingham Forest and Newcastle United match played at the City Ground, Nottingham, England on July 31, 2002. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

4. Craig Westcarr (18 years, three months, five days)

A shining bright light, everyone knew about Westcarr when he became the then youngest player to represent the club on debut aged 16.

On May 4 2003, Westcarr scored his first and only Forest goal in a 2-2 draw with Rotherham United, putting the Reds temporarily ahead.

Unfortunately for Westcarr, it didn’t work out for him at Forest and after 26 appearances, he was released.

He found success elsewhere in the East Midlands though – winning League Two with neighbours Notts County in 2010.

Forest
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND – FEBRUARY 20: A general view of The City Ground home of Nottingham Forest during the Sky Bet Championship match between Nottingham Forest and Blackburn Rovers at City Ground on February 20, 2021 in Nottingham, England. (Photo by Mick Walker – CameraSport via Getty Images)

3. Phil Starbuck (18 years, 19 days)

Born in Nottingham, Starbuck came through the system under Brian Clough and scored on his First Division debut.

 

On December 13 1986, Starbuck scored an equaliser as the Reds slipped to a 3-2 defeat to Newcastle United.

Much like Westcarr, Starbuck didn’t make a huge impression beyond that – with two league goals in 36 games.

However, he did have a good Football League career, most notably with Huddersfield Town, whom he represented 137 times.

Arvin Appiah
BURTON-UPONTRENT, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 30: Arvin Appiah of Nottingham Forest celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal with Matty Cash (14) and Ben Watson (R) score his teams second goal during the Carabao Cup Fourth Round match between Burton Albion and Nottingham Forest at Pirelli Stadium on October 30, 2018 in Burton-upon-Trent, England. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

2. Arvin Appiah 17 years, nine months, 25 days)

It’ll always be a case of ‘what if’ with Appiah, as he is yet to showcase the ability and potential that the academy knows he has.

Appiah’s goal in a 3-2 defeat to Burton Albion in the EFL Cup on October 30 2018 made him the second youngest scorer in the club’s history.

Not long after that – and with just eight appearances in total – Appiah was sold for £8m to Almeria.

He has scored just twice there and is currently on loan at Lugo, where hopefully he can kickstart his career.

Ben Brereton
Ben Brereton is the hero as his penalty puts Forest 3-1 ahead during The Emirates FA Cup Third Round match between Nottingham Forest and Arsenal at City Ground on January 7, 2018 in Nottingham, England.

1. Ben Brereton (17 years, nine months, 17 days)

Someone that Forest fans genuinely thought could go all the way, Brereton takes the crown of Forest’s youngest ever scorer.

He did so in dream fashion, with the forward scoring a 90th minute winner against Aston Villa in a 2-1 win on February 7 2017.

He also scored in Forest’s incredible 4-2 win against Arsenal in the FA Cup and in total scored nine in 57 for the Reds.

In 2018, he moved to Blackburn Rovers for a £7m fee and the move hasn’t quite worked out, with Brereton scoring seven in 83 at Ewood Park.

Who will be the next Nottingham Forest youngster to make the list?

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