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Report: Southampton join West Ham, Palace in race to sign Nottingham Forest ace

Hampshire Live claim Southampton have thrown their hat into the ring to sign Nottingham Forest centre-back Joe Worrall. The Forest defender has caught the eye after a string of impressive displays in 2020-21. Southampton are keen, but may face competition from West Ham and Palace for Worrall.

Worrall, 24, helped Forest keep 12 clean sheets in the 31 Championship appearances he made last season. In the 15 league games in which Forest were missing Worrall – largely due to a fractured foot earlier in the campaign – they managed just two clean sheets. He is crucial to Forest.

Even more so, because the ex-Rangers loanee captained Forest 15 times in all competitions throughout the campaign. This season, he is yet to feature due to a calf injury but that has not put Southampton off. They want Worrall as a replacement for Jannik Vestergaard – who is now at Leicester.

But they will not be alone in their pursuit. Worrall – who Hampshire Live say is rated between £10million and £12million – is also a target for Palace and West Ham. That is according to The Athletic, who also say Burnley want the England Under-21 star. He has a contract Forest until 2024.

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Who needs Worrall most: West Ham, Palace, Southampton or Burnley?

Worrall, at 24, will want to begin his Premier League career and remain first choice. At Burnley, he will be firmly planted behind James Tarkowski and Ben Mee. So, a move to Turf Moor is not his best. Crystal Palace have brought in Marc Guehi and Joachim Andersen, who would start first.

But a move to West Ham or Southampton would be more advisable. Southampton need a replacement and there is plenty of opportunity to start for Worrall. West Ham play three at the back, and are in the Europa League. For Worrall, West Ham or Southampton are his best moves.

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