David McGoldrick: I’ve got nothing to prove against Forest

David McGoldrick levels the score at 2-2 with the final kick of the Ipswich Town v Rotherham United

David McGoldrick levels the score at 2-2 with the final kick of the Ipswich Town v Rotherham United match - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Ipswich Town striker David McGoldrick says he has nothing to prove against his former club Nottingham Forest in Saturday’s televised Championship clash at Portman Road (5pm, Sky Sports).

The 28-year-old was born and raised in the East Midlands city, grew up supporting them and, at the age of 21, completed a dream £1m switch to The City Ground after coming through Southampton’s ranks alongside the likes of Gareth Bale, Theo Walcott and Adam Lallana.

It was a move that never quite worked out though. Facing stiff competition in a striker-heavy squad he only appeared in fits and starts, often operated out wide and saw his career stall over a crucial three-year period.

“Forest is the club that I support, I’m a Nottingham boy, but I didn’t have the best of times there,” admits McGoldrick, who scored just nine goals in 36 starts and 39 substitute appearances for the Tricky Trees.

“I could make excuses and say certain managers didn’t pick me or played me out of position, but I think I have to hold my hands up and say I wasn’t good enough. I don’t think I have anything to prove against them though, I don’t think I need to go and score five goals against them or anything like that.

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“I’ve just got to play my own game.”

An impressive half-season loan spell at League One side Coventry rejuvenated McGoldrick at the end of 2012, that led to a temporary spell at Town at the start of 2013 and he subsequently joined Mick McCarthy’s team on a Bosman free transfer.

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It was only then that the silky forward finally began to live up to his early potential, his talismanic form in 2013/14 leading to an £8m transfer bid from newly-promoted Leicester City.

Two years of injury frustration have punctuated that upward curve of progress, but the front man is now determined to make up for lost time.

“Since I left Forest I’ve become a much better player, I’m showing what I can do and I think they all know what a player I should have been when I was there,” he said.

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