Moussa Niakhate: Nottingham Forest sign Senegal prospect from Mainz

Moussa NiakhateGetty

Nottingham Forest have announced the signing of Moussa Niakhate from Bundesliga outfit Mainz.

After representing the German top-flight side for four years, the 26-year-old penned a three-year deal with the Reds which will keep him at the City Ground until 2025.

“Nottingham Forest are delighted to announce the signing of Mainz 05 defender Moussa Niakhate,” a statement from the Premier League side read.

“The 26-year-old becomes our fourth signing of the summer transfer window, putting pen to paper on a three-year deal with the club holding a one-year extension option.”

During his time at Mainz after moving from Metz, the centre-back featured in 128 German elite division matches. During the 2021-22 campaign, he captained the Carnival Club to an eighth-place finish.

In his first interview, he said joining an English top-flight side is a dream come.

"For me, this is a dream to come to England and to sign for such a historic club in Nottingham Forest. The club is well known around the world and its fans are incredible,” he told the Nottingham Forest website.

“The Premier League is also the best league in the world and every player wants to play here.

"I’m just so excited to get started in pre-season, meet my new teammates and get ready for the new season, wearing the Garibaldi red and white at the City Ground.”

With this move, he becomes the third African in Steve Cooper’s squad after Nigeria’s Taiwo Awoniyi and Cape Verde’s Nuno da Costa.

Niakhate will join the rest of the Forest squad in Spain for their pre-season training camp.

“Moussa comes to Forest with a wealth of experience in one of Europe’s top competitions, having enjoyed four seasons with Mainz in the Bundesliga,” said Cooper.

“In addition to being a strong, fast and accomplished centre back, he’s captained Mainz to their best league finish in the last five years, and his leadership experience is invaluable for our return to the Premier League.

“Moussa has attracted the interest of multiple clubs, but he has chosen Nottingham Forest and we are delighted to welcome him into the squad.”

Niakhate could make his debut against Coventry City on Friday evening at the Pinatar Arena.

Niakhate joins Nottingham Forest

Will Niakhate be a regular in the Forest team next season?