Nottingham Forest were linked with a move for Brighton defender Haydon Roberts during the January transfer window. Over the weekend, however, he put pen to paper on a season-long loan deal with Derby County.
The youngster rejected the advances of Sheffield Wednesday to join Derby. League One awaits the Rams next season following their relegation to the third tier during the 2021/22 campaign.
Roberts does look like an exciting signing. The 20-year-old is highly rated at Brighton. He was on th bench 14 times during 2021/22 and Graham Potter is thought to be a massive fan of the central defender.
The Seagulls academy graduate has spent some time out on loan already. During the 2020/21 campaign, he played 26 times for Rochdale when they were a League One outfit.
Roberts is an uncompromising central defender. He’s strong in the air and comfortable when it comes to playing the ball out from the back.
Forest were never likely to pursue him this summer. He was always an option when they were a Championship football club and he might have been on the list in that event.
Roberts should become a big part of Liam Rosenior’s team. The new Rams boss has a strong connection to Brighton having spent time there as a player.
Forest have been busy strengthening their own squad. Moussa Niakhate, Neco Williams, Omar Richards and Giulian Biancone have all been added defensively.
Forest linked with Roberts and it will be interesting to see how he goes at Derby
The Reds will be well aware of Roberts. It seems as though Forest prepared two lists when promotion was still on the line and perhaps the youngster was on the Championship list.
Roberts does look like a capable player but Forest were never going to sign him in the Premier League. They have bigger fish to fry and proven quality will be the order of the day.
The young Seagulls academy graduate is still learning his way in the game. With that in mind, he’s very much considered a work-in-progress player.
It will be very interesting to see how he does at Derby. The Rams presume that they will take League One by storm but they could be in for a culture shock.
Signing players like Roberts will help their case, however.