David McGoldrick will leave Derby County at the end of his contract this summer.

The 35-year-old striker had been in talks over the possibility of extending his stay at Pride Park Stadium in recent weeks.

Those discussions have now respectfully concluded after McGoldrick informed the club that he wishes to fulfil the ambition of re-joining his boyhood club Notts County, where he began his playing career, when his contract expires at the end of June.

Throughout talks over his future McGoldrick remained transparent that the option to follow his heart and return to Meadow Lane was something that greatly appealed to him at this stage of his career.

McGoldrick will leave Derby after spending the 2022/23 season with the Rams. The former Republic of Ireland international netted 25 goals in 45 appearances and claimed the Jack Stamps Player of the Season award.

McGoldrick said: “It has been a difficult decision for me to leave Derby County, but it has been a huge ambition of mine to play for Notts County again before the end of my career.

“I’ve been honest and open with both Paul Warne and the club about it in recent weeks and they’ve been supportive and understanding.

“If it wasn’t for the fact that I had the chance to return to Notts, it would have been a no-brainer to stay at Derby - regardless of interest from any other club. I really enjoyed working under the gaffer and his staff, playing alongside the lads and, of course, performing in front of the brilliant fans at Pride Park. I want to thank everyone for making me feel so welcome in the last year.

“I had a wonderful season with Derby and to score 25 goals and three hat-tricks made it such an enjoyable time, the best in terms of goals for me personally in a season, and actually made the decision such a difficult one.

“I’ve had many conversations with the gaffer over the last few weeks and he really did do everything he could to keep me at Derby but, in the end, I have decided to go with my heart and return to Notts.”

He added: “I wish the club the very best of luck moving forward and I’ll be willing Derby on next season. They’re in good hands both on the pitch with the gaffer, Richie Barker, Matt Hamshaw and Andy Warrington, as well as off it too.”

Derby County would like to wish ‘Didzy’ every success in the next chapter of his career with Notts County and thank him for his contribution over the last year.