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Nicklas Bendtner will either be superb for Nottingham Forest, or the most redundant signing ever.

Thursday 8th September 2016
The Danish forward is making his return to English football, signing for Championship club, Nottingham Forest. Club and player have fallen below huge expectations set for them, could this be a perfect match or a further detriment to both parties.

Bendtner left VFL Wolfsburg in the summer and henceforth found himself without a club, the transfer window came and went; yet Nicklas was still without a club. In the last five seasons, he's scored just as many goals – one a season, not the most desirable statistic for a striker. Given he was out of work, the Scandinavian succumb to the fact he wouldn't be signing for a top-tier club in Western Europe, so widened his search and trained with his hometown club, FC København before signing for Nottingham Forest.

The move has sparked a lot of media activity, as the Danish striker has been no stranger to controversy in the past. He famously went on the record to tabloids with a lot of confidence, “I want to be among the best strikers in the world. Trust me, it will happen.” One of the most notable utterances, causing fjords of memes to dispel upon the striker claiming him to be a deity of world football, further giving him the nickname, ‘Lord Bendtner'. More recently the striker became embroiled with the German media having overslept through his alarm and missing a training session whilst with his last club, Wolfsburg.
Whilst it's easy become distracted by the media sandstorm that surrounds Bendtner, Forest fans can take a crumb of comfort from the striker's record in the Championship. He last played in the English second flight when he spent a year on loan with Birmingham City and he scored eleven goals. The most he's ever scored in a single season. Yes, that may have been ten years ago but his time in the Championship could be considered the most successful stint of his career.

Nottingham Forest for years has said that every season is theirs and “they'll be back”, yet have stagnated in the Championship for many years. The Fawaz takeover, Billy Davies' return and the Stuart Pearce appointment have all come and gone with no top flight status achieved. Nothing has forged the way for the former European cup winners back to the Premier League. Although Nicklas Bendtner is undoubtedly the biggest name to arrive at the club in a long time, possibly since Jermaine Jenas' loan move to the club. The Dane has a similar issue to the club, he's now an inert forward who's struggled for many years to find a home. The two parties have a common dread which they could perceivably help each other with. Bendtner for all his woe and poor conception is still a Danish international and still a fairly good player. In return, Forest provides him with a platform to become the star he always dreamed of being, as the second-tier will give him ample opportunity to score a fair amount of goals. He gets the goals he always wanted and Forest escalate up the league, and who knows maybe into the Premier League. That's if it all goes to plan of course.
There is, of course, the alternative where both parties fall short and continue down a path of disillusionment. Nottingham Forest for all their worth have been inconsistent, yet at present are on a three-game winning streak. Bendtner himself could default on all his promises entirely, and bring his poor Bundesliga form with him to the City Ground. His two-year contract could just further the agony of club and player, should it not go to plan.

A very interesting side-story with the signing is that Nicklas will presumably be part of the matchday squad which will take on his former club, Arsenal, in the EFL cup on the 20th of September. Whilst the club has changed since he was last with the North London club, he may still hold the vital knowledge to unlock his former employer's defence. Either way, the striker's arrival in the East Midlands will provide us with plenty more stories for months to come as he continues his quest to become the world's greatest striker.
Warren Smith

A British and J.League soccer enthusiast, now local to Yokohama, Japan. A keen Arsenal supporter. Has been known to play the game every once in awhile, once likened to Xherdan Shaqiri. 


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