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Robert Earnshaw – The best Zambian player ever

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Zambia is definitely not a nation known around the world for its football history. There are few players born in Zambia who have managed to have an important career in international clubs and even fewer are the trophies won by the national team on the world scene. Certainly thinking of zambian football news, international football legends are not among the first things we would associate it with.

Yet there is a footballer, born in Zambia, who has become a legend not only for his country, but also in the homeland of football, Great Britain. His name is Robert Earnshaw, born in Zambia to a Welsh father and a Zambian mother. Despite being born in Zambia, Earnshaw decided to play for the Wales national team, being in possession of dual nationality.

Robert Earnshaw holds one of the most important and complex records in football history: he is in fact the only player to have scored a hat-trick in the Premier League, all three divisions of the English Football League, the League Cup, the FA Cup, and for his country in an international match. For sure, if we want to talk about the best Zambian born player in history, Robert Earnshaw is the right man.

Robert Earnshaw – His debut in Wales and his best seasons in Premier League

Robert Earnshaw entered football playing first in the Cardiff youth team, making his professional debut only a year later (at the age of 16) in 1999. It is immediately clear to everyone that Earnshaw’s best gift is his innate ability of scoring dozens of goals. Soon the Zambian-born footballer shatters all club records, becoming one of Cardiff’s best players ever.

In 2003 Earnshaw made 30 goals in First Division, so many Premier League teams started to keep their eyes on him. West Bromwich Albion is the first team that makes him sign a contract in the Premier League and from that moment Earnshaw’s career will be a continuous pilgrimage far and wide in the UK and, as a globetrotter, around the world.

From 2004 to 2011 Robert Earnshaw played in England, scoring 85 goals in the teams he played for (West Brom, Norwich City, Derby County and Nottingham Forest). Between 2008 and 2011 he scored 45 goals in 113 matches with Nottingham Forest, becoming an idol for the fans of the oldest team in the world.

In 2011 Robert Earnshaw decided to return to Wales, right at Cardiff City, but his career went through a very fast downward phase. In two seasons Earnshaw played only 19 matches scoring 3 goals. Even his loan to Maccabi Tel Aviv in Israel fails to resurface Earnshaw’s career, who from then on will start switching to different teams even during the same season, with low performances. 

Robert Earnshaw retired from football in 2015 after a year in Canada, playing for Vancouver Whitecaps FC. In total, the Zambian-born player has scored 194 goals as a professional footballer playing for twelve different clubs.

Robert Earnshaw’s career with Zambian national football team

Robert Earnshaw lived in Wales from an early age, so he chose to play for the Welsh national football team, with 16 goals in 59 caps. The Zambian-born footballer is currently the seventh highest scorer for the Welsh national team.

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Start: 2019-07-01 End: 2019-07-31