After three days of negotiations, All Whites striker Chris Wood has been formally paraded as a Nottingham Forest player after passing his medical.
He completed his loan move from Newcastle United as reports also confirmed Wood can trigger a permanent move to the East Midlands club at the end of the season, prompting a £15 million transfer fee.
Both clubs tried to complete the deal in time for Wood (31) to play against Bournemouth this weekend but delays in the registration may have put that in doubt. Regardless, the deal means Wood can’t play for Forest against Newcastle United in their English Premier League match on March 18.
With the deal confirmed, Wood spoke publicly about it for the first time.
“It’s a great feeling and I am very thankful to be here.
“Nottingham Forest is a massive club which I have come up against a number of times, but it’s nice now to be able to pull on the red shirt and fight for the club.
“You can see the transition over the past 18 months and it’s progressing in the right way. It’s a project that’s going in the right direction.
“It’s a club looking up rather than anything else, it’s going to take a lot of hard work, but it’s a squad that’s pulling together.
“I’ve been in this league a long time, so hopefully, I’ll bring a lot of experience to try and help the younger lads out and bring everybody together.
“As a visiting player, it’s always been a hostile atmosphere at The City Ground. The crowd are loud and strong, so I’m thankful to have that passionate fanbase on my side now and I can’t wait to get playing there.”
Sporting Director Filippo Giraldi said:
“Chris is a player who has great character and experience, having played 189 games and scored 54 goals in the Premier League.
“He is hungry to join us, and we are proud and ready to fight together to reach our targets.”
Meanwhile, teammates and even the club owners at Newcastle United have made it clear how popular the Kiwi was at their club.
“He’s been a huge player for us, he’s been outstanding in every way,” he said.
“When we signed him we were in a difficult position, he played a huge role on the pitch and helped transform the team. This season he’s been excellent on and off the pitch in terms of his leadership and positivity, we can’t underestimate the role he’s played.”
Newcastle United co-owner Mehrdad Ghodoussi said:
“Thank you for the last 12 months
“We couldn’t have done it without you!
“Wishing you the best of luck on your new adventure.”
Teammates sent many messages of support to Wood. In reply, Wood used Instagram to reply.
“A short note to you all to say thank you to everyone at this special club, especially my teammates, the coaches and all of the support staff,” Wood said on Instagram.
“You guys are amazing to work with. And of course, to the supporters – what incredible atmosphere you guys give the team, it really does lift everyone … I’ll be cheering along with you all for the rest of this season!!”
How the deal was struck
How Friends of Football covered the move …