Nottingham Forest underwent an extensive recruitment drive, making nearly 50 signings following their return to the Premier League last season. However, with several players’ contracts expiring this summer, the club is now seeking to reduce its squad size to alleviate the wage bill. Here, we’ve identified three players who we believe should not be offered new contracts at the conclusion of the 2023/24 campaign.
1. Harry Arter
Harry Arter’s acquisition in 2020 from Bournemouth on a three-year deal is widely regarded as one of the club’s least successful transfers. After his arrival, the 33-year-old swiftly fell out of favor and hasn’t featured in a match for the Reds since 2021. He embarked on loan spells at Charlton Athletic and Notts County, failing to make a significant impact at either club. Arter’s contract was extended for a year when Forest secured promotion, owing to a clause in his existing agreement, and he is currently earning a minimum of £35,000 per week. Given his lack of recent contributions, it’s reasonable to conclude that his time at the club should come to an end.
2. Ethan Horvath
Ethan Horvath, who joined the club on a free transfer during the 2021/22 season, assumed the role of the second-choice goalkeeper behind the popular Brice Samba. However, he has made just six appearances for the team before heading on loan to Luton Town, who achieved promotion last season. Forest chose not to make Horvath’s move to Luton permanent, and no other clubs have expressed interest in acquiring him. With his contract set to expire at the end of the campaign, it appears that his tenure with the club has already concluded, especially since he wasn’t included in Forest’s 25-man Premier League squad this season.
3. Cheikhou Kouyaté
While the decision may be seen as controversial, we believe that Cheikhou Kouyaté should not be offered a new contract when his current one expires this summer. The 33-year-old was brought in as a backup player last summer, but since then, the club has made substantial investments in the midfield department, resulting in multiple players ahead of the former Crystal Palace man. Although Kouyaté has been a dependable squad player, his age suggests that the club could find a younger and more cost-effective alternative for this role. While Kouyaté has never disappointed when representing the Reds, his rumored weekly wage of £45,000 makes it advisable to remove him from the wage bill.