Brice Samba has suggested during an interview with RMC Sport that he was the one who pushed to leave Nottingham Forest. The Reds goalkeeper stunned the club shortly after promotion by announcing his intentions to leave the City Ground.
The 27-year-old stopper has enjoyed a brilliant start to life in Ligue 1 with Lens. There, he’s quickly become the first-choice goalkeeper, with the French club chasing a place in next season’s Champions League.
Samba signed for Forest in 2019. He was initially expected to provide backup for Manchester City loanee Arijanet Muric but his sporadic form saw him dispossessed pretty quickly.
The goalkeeper never looked back. He became an instant hit with the club’s supporters, renowned for his gamesmanship and his unreal ability when it came to saving penalties.
Samba’s final appearance in a Forest shirt came in last season’s play-off final at Wembley. Prior to that, he saved three penalties as the Reds defeated Sheffield United after a shootout at the City Ground.
The player’s departure proved a hot topic in the summer. Many felt that not enough was done to keep him but it would appear that his mind was already made up.
He told RMC Sport: “It surprised more than one, that’s for sure. Playing in the Premier League is a dream for certain footballers. For me, it was a choice of heart, like I’ve often said. I felt a lot of desire from Lens, I felt they really wanted me and that really important for me.”
Samba suggests he wanted Forest exit
This doesn’t really come as a surprise. Steve Cooper will have likely told Samba to expect some competition for his place and clearly, Samba felt he’d rather make sure he was the first choice elsewhere.
Move to France carried great weight for the goalkeeper. Lens are a team that are capable of challenging in the higher echelons of the table and obviously, he felt he could do great things at the club.
Samba will never be forgotten at Forest though. He always gave his all, proving a cult hero among the fan base and even today he Tweeted about the Reds after their brilliant point against Manchester City.