Robert Earnshaw has rejected a new contract at Nottingham Forest in favour of a return to Cardiff City.
The 30-year-old started his career at Cardiff City back in 1998 and went on to score 105 goals in 205 appearances for the Bluebirds, and his outgoing attitude coupled with his trademark backflip celebration made him a true fans favourite at Ninian Park.
Many Cardiff City fans were hoping they would be reunited with Earnshaw in the Premier League, but failure in the play-off’s left Cardiff fans rueing another season of disappointment.
Successive failures became too much for the Cardiff City board and Dave Jones was replaced by Malky MacKay at the helm while Craig Bellamy, Jay Bothroyd, and Michael Chopra have all left the club.
Finances are tight at the Cardiff City Stadium and Earnshaw arrives on a free transfer following the expiration of his Forest contract, and while Steve McClaren was hoping to convince the Wales international to stay, Earnshaw’s love of Cardiff is the reasoning behind the move.
Earnshaw scored 43 goals in his three years for Nottingham Forest and over the course of his career has scored 66 goals in 151 Championship appearances at a ratio of 0.44 goals per game.
Add to that Earnshaw scored 84 goals in 167 league games for Cardiff City following a loan spell at Scottish side Greenock Morton, and it’s safe to say the Bluebirds have signed a goalscorer.
Cardiff’s inability to convert strong seasons into promotion is the reason they are as big as 16/1 to win the Championship and the Bluebirds start their campaign away to 9/2 Championship favourites West Ham.
However the arrival of Earnshaw will spark renewed optimism amongst the Cardiff fans and there is every chance the Welshman will match Bothroyd’s haul of 18 league goals last season.
Earnshaw becomes the fourth arrival under Mackay and will join winger Craig Conway, midfielder Don Cowie and left-back Andrew Taylor for pre-season training.