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Tuesday, 22 July 2008

A big season for...Robert Earnshaw

Robert Earnshaw's £2.65m move from Derby County to Nottingham Forest at the start of the summer took the Welshman's career transfer value to over £12.5m.

Colin Calderwood thus joins Gary Megson, Dave Jones and Nigel Worthington as managers to have staked plenty on the 27-year-old striker and will be hoping to see more of the player than Megson and Jones did at their respective clubs.

Earnshaw will be hoping for that too given the fact the men who succeeded Megson and Jones, Bryan Robson at West Brom and Paul Jewell at Derby, were clearly not convinced of the player's talents.

Jewell last season, in the peculiar language of football that seeks to reassure us all that it is a job like any other, told Earnshaw that he needed to put in 'more of a shift'.

Wales boss John Toshack is not a fan either with Earnshaw's international career having disappeared out of sight in recent years.

There's no arguing with Earnshaw's record at Championship level. Prolific at Cardiff, his spell at Norwich yielded 27 goals in 45 appearances. At Premier League level, the player can point to a lack of chances and a pretty decent ratio of goals to minutes on the park.

He is likely to start the season alongside Andy Cole at the City Ground, a potentially lethal pairing of players, one with nothing left to prove and one still struggling to live up to the hype of his early years.

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