Middlesbrough complete signing of Nottingham Forest striker Britt Assombalonga in club-record deal

Middlesbrough broke their club-record transfer deal today as striker Britt Assombalonga joined from Championship rivals Nottingham Forest for a fee of around £15 million.

A risk worth taking for Boro

There have been some extraordinary deals taking place in the Championship so far this summer, with Rúben Neves' shock move from FC Porto to Wolverhampton Wanderers for £15 million being one of them. However, this is another deal which has certainly caused eyebrows to be raised. 

Assombalonga has an impressive goalscoring record for Forest since he joined the club in 2014 in a £5.5 million move from Peterborough United in League One.

During his three-year spell at the club, he scored 30 goals in 60 appearances for the Reds as he became a key figure at The City Ground. Two of these goals came in a 3-0 final day victory for Forest against Ipswich Town which saw the Reds avoid relegation by just two goals. 

Assombalonga scored some vital goals for Forest last season. (picture: Getty Images / George Molloy)
Assombalonga scored some vital goals for Forest last season. (picture: Getty Images / Conor Molloy)

However, it has not been all plain sailing for the player during his time at the club. He suffered a career threatening injury against Wigan Athletic in 2015 which saw him out of action for over a year. It was a very frustrating period for the player and he only started to regain his full fitness towards the end of last season.

The fact he was still able to score 14 goals last season despite missing a significant amount of games is a good sign for Boro supporters.

There is little doubt that a fully fit Assombalonga could score at least 20 goals at the Riverside next season. However, there will still be concerns about his fitness due to a number of niggling injuries which kept popping up last season on his return. Ultimately, if the 24-year-old fires Boro to an immediate return to the Premier League then it will be viewed as money well spent. 

Assombalonga 'can't wait' to get started

After weeks of speculation about his future, the DR Congo striker can now settle down and start to prepare for next season. He told Middlesbrough's official site of his excitement to meet his new teammates.

He said: “I can’t wait to get started and train with the boys. I’m glad it’s completed and I can focus on what’s ahead now. I can’t wait to meet the manager and get ready for next season. There’s a good feeling around the place. From the minute I walked in it felt right.”

However, he also wanted to reflect on his time at Forest and wish his former club all the best after they gave him his chance to shine in the second tier.

He added: “I want to thank the Forest fans for being behind me, especially after my injury. They gave me a chance in the Championship and I want to say thanks to them and wish them all the best for the season."

The addition of Assombalonga marks new manager Garry Monk's fifth signing as he looks to build a squad capable of mounting a serious promotion challenge next season. The likes of Jonny Howson, Cyrus Christie, Connor Roberts and Martin Braithwaite have all already arrived at the club.