NECO WILLIAMS says fellow Welshman Steve Cooper’s burning ambition convinced him to join Premier League new boys Nottingham Forest.
The 21-year-old Wales international gave up massive Champions League nights and title-chases with Liverpool to sign on at the City Ground, after Forest agreed a £17million fee with the Anfield club.
Williams revealed he believes newly-promoted Forest are capable of turning the clock back to the days when they had Euro ambitions of their own.
“Forest are a club with incredible history and the City Ground is a very special venue,” said the 21-times-capped Wales right-back.
“Having spoken to the Head Coach, there’s a huge amount of ambition being shown at the club and I can’t wait to join up with my new teammates and get ready for the challenge ahead.
“I’m really excited to join Nottingham Forest and to help this great club move forwards in the Premier League and I can’t wait to experience the City Ground in full voice.”
Williams issued an emotional farewell to Liverpool after 15 years of service at Anfield.
He tweeted: “15 years at this special club, thank you for everything @LFC it’s been an honour to play for this club and to play under Jurgen Klopp. But I’ve now decided to take up a new challenge.
“I wish all the team and the staff the best of luck for the future and will always continue to support the club. Thank you and never forget YNWA!!!”
Williams is Cooper’s sixth signing of the summer and will join the Reds at training today ahead of Tuesday’s friendly with Burton Albion at the Pirelli Stadium.
The Wrexham-born youngster has signed a four-year-deal after spending the second half of last season on loan at Fulham, where he helped the Cottagers win promotion to the Prem.
He also played a key role in helping Wales end their 64-year-wait to qualify for the World Cup finals.
Forest head coach Cooper is delighted to have that experience on board as Williams fills the position left by on-loan right-back Djed Spence.
Cooper said: “Despite being only 21, Neco has established himself with Wales.
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“He’s played in the Premier League, the Champions League and in World Cup qualifiers in the last 12 months and he is a very talented right-back.
“We believe that he’s got an incredibly high ceiling and that he can play a huge role for us at Nottingham Forest in our return to the Premier League. We’re delighted to have him on board.”
Williams has been with Liverpool since he was eight years old but felt he needed to move on this summer to secure regular game time ahead of November’s World Cup in Qatar.
He made 13 senior appearances for Jurgen Klopp’s Reds.