Sky Bet Championship club Nottingham Forest have made a second loan signing using some of the £250,000 Sky Bet Transfer Fund won by fan Shaun Lander.Aston Villa midfielder Gary Gardner has joined Stuart Pearce’s Forest squad until the end of the season.
Gardner was most recently on loan at Brighton and Hove Albion - where he scored two goals in 11 games - and joins Chelsea full back Todd Kane at the City ground after he was signed on loan on Thursday.
22-year-old Gardner’s wages will be paid by the Sky Bet Transfer Fund.
Fan Shaun Lander was selected at random from over 70,000 fans in a draw at Wembley on December 16.
Landscape gardener Shaun, who also won £5,000 for himself, said: "As a Nottingham Forest fan I’m delighted that the club has been able to add a second player to the squad using the Sky Bet Transfer Fund.
"Hopefully both Todd and Gary can make the difference for Stuart between now and the end of the season."
Fans who bet with Football League Title Sponsor Sky Bet earn a Transfer Fund token for every pound they spend, putting them in with a chance of winning the £250,000 Transfer Fund for their club.
Forest manager Stuart Pearce said: "We are delighted that Gary has agreed to join us until the end of the season.
"His ability and character will be essential between now and the end of the season."
Sky Bet Transfer Fund profile: Gary Gardner
Gardner said: "It's a great club and I'm relishing the opportunity. I can't wait to get going and help the club in their pursuit of promotion."
Sky Bet Head of Sponsorship Edwin Martin said: "It’s fantastic for Shaun to see his club making a second loan signing from the Premier League using the money that he won."
The Sky Bet Transfer Fund is now open again, so fans have another chance to win £5,000 for themselves and £250,000 for their club to spend on transfers in the summer.
While Nottingham Forest are currently subject to a Financial Fair Play embargo from The Football League, they are still permitted to register new players if they have 24 or fewer established players (players aged 21 or over that have made at least five starting appearances for the club) but only if the employee costs of the player being signed are less than £600,000 per annum (or pro-rata if signed on a shorter contract).
Where embargoed clubs have 24 established players, they are permitted to trade on a ‘one in, one out’ basis but only if the employee costs of the player coming into the club are no more than the lower amount of either 75% of the equivalent costs of the player going out or a maximum of £600,000 per annum (or pro-rata if signed on shorter contract).