Star put Nottingham Forest in panic mode after deadline day snub, opening door for Keylor Navas deal
Anderlecht goalkeeper Hendrik van Crombrugge reportedly turned down the chance to join Nottingham Forest on deadline day.
It’s no secret that Steve Cooper was desperate to add a new shot-stopper to his squad and it seems that the Belgium international was his first preference, ahead of Keylor Navas.
Forest eventually agreed on a late deal to sign Navas on loan, which was essential after his go-to man Dean Henderson picked up an injury.
According to reports coming out of Belgium, Van Crombrugge had the opportunity to join the Premier League side, but ‘turned down’ a late transfer offer.
Anderlecht were allegedly open to losing their former captain, as they would have relieved themselves of his hefty salary.
But, the 29-year-old instead opted to stay where he was, despite recently falling behind his teammate Bart Verbruggen in the pecking order.
Van Crombrugge could have been a smart addition for Forest, as he has shown how good he can be in Belgium.
The goalkeeper has amassed 120 appearances for Anderlecht since joining the club in 2019, helping them to two third-place finishes in the process.
He also earned a call-up to the Belgium national team in 2019, so there is no doubt that he is highly rated by his club and country.
After the disappointment of missing out a deadline day deal for Van Crombrugge, it was essential Forest signed a new goalkeeper after Henderson’s injury, but they had very little time to find an alternative.
Major Forest relief after sealing a last-minute deal for Keylor Navas
Luckily, the former European champions had already begun negotiations with PSG keeper Keylor Navas, so they were able to get a last-minute deal over the line.
Cooper will hope the serial trophy winner will bring a winning mentality to the Forest dressing room and provide effective competition for Wayne Hennessey and Henderson – who is expected to be out for at least four weeks.
Navas brings plenty of experience with him, having won three Champions League titles and three league titles during his spells at Real Madrid and PSG.
The 36-year-old started his career at Costa Rican club Saprissa, before moving to Spain to join Albacete in 2010.
Navas then penned a permanent move to Levante in 2012 and after two years as a regular starter, Real Madrid triggered his £9m release clause to bring him to the Spanish capital.
The keeper spent five years at the Bernabeu, initially as a backup to club legend Iker Casillas. However, he eventually earned his chance as the starting goalkeeper and went on to make over 100 LaLiga appearances for the club.
The arrival of Thibaut Courtois in the 2018/19 season put Navas’ starting spot in doubt though and he ended up joining PSG on a four-year contract in September 2019.
Since, Navas has made 71 appearances in Ligue 1 for the French giants and played a key role in two league-winning campaigns in 2019/20 and 2021/22.
However, Navas was pushed down the pecking order in Paris after the signing of Gianluigi Donnarumma and as a result, has made just two appearances in the current campaign.
Signing on a loan until the end of the season, it’s unlikely that the Costa Rican will be happy sitting on the bench at the City Ground.
With that in mind, there’s a good chance Navas could make his debut on Saturday, when Forest play Leeds United in a massive six-pointer at the bottom of the table.
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