It is now one year since Nottingham Forest admitted defeat in their attempt to save the career of Nicklas Bendtner. The Danish striker was allowed to leave the club for Norwegian side Rosenborg 12 months ago this week.
The former Arsenal, Juventus and Wolfsburg talent has never settled into a footballing career. He has made more headlines off the pitch than on it during his time playing professional football.
At Forest, he was hoping to redeem himself. A striker more than capable of scoring in the Championship, Forest fans were hopeful when they secured his signature in September 2016.
Bendtner’s spell at the City Ground went the way many doubters predicted. A sour stint at Nottingham Forest saw him spend most of his time on the treatment table. After just six months, 17 games and a measly two goals Bendtner was gone.
The Dane made a move to the Norwegian giants in Trondheim, perhaps his last shot at redemption.
Nottingham Forest fans are probably shocked at what has happened since.
Finally, ‘Lord’ Bendtner has found his feet. In the 12 months since Forest cut their losses and allowed his Scandinavian return the now 30-year-old striker has scored 23 goals in 43 games for the Norwegian giants.
Bendtner’s form also saw him earn a Danish national team recall, scoring in the play-off triumph v the Republic of Ireland.
Last week Chinese Super League side Beijing Guoan tried to lure him to the Far East, as reported by TV2 in Norway. However, despite the money on offer, Bendtner made it clear he wanted to remain where he is.
It highlighted a level of maturity from the Dane that has not been seen before. Bendtner put his footballing integrity ahead of financial gain. On the day he could have been securing a money-spinning move, to play alongside Cedric Bakambu and Renato Augusto, he scored twice in a friendly win over Dinamo Brest in the bitter cold.
Nottingham Forest, in all of this, seem unlucky. Bendtner’s attitude at the City Ground had appeared to have changed but fitness concerns prevented him from showcasing his best. Since the switch to Norway he has remained fit with the goals flowing as a consequence.
If only Forest had such a potent finisher in their ranks right now.