FORMER Portsmouth striker Ryan Bird has parted company with Eastleigh and returned to the Football League.

The 29-year-old has joined Newport County who are rock-bottom of SkyBet League Two.

Bird was transfer-listed by Eastleigh boss Martin Allen just prior to Christmas.

He made 19 Spitfires appearances and scored three league goals since signing for former boss Chris Todd during the summer.

The 6ft 4in targetman's most productive game in an Eastleigh shirt brought him a four-goal haul against North Leigh in the FA Cup.

Bird started his career at non-League Burnham where his prolific scoring exploits earned him a move to Portsmouth in 2013.

He spent time at Havant & Waterlooville, Cambridge United, Hartlepool and Yeovil before signing a one-year deal at the Silverlake.

Welcoming Bird to Newport, boss Graham Westley told the club's website: "Ryan has a strong track record in situations like ours and in our league.

"He is both a targetman and an able runner, essential ingredients on our pitch."

"He provides a perfect platform, especially at home, where his presence will help us to build our attacking game in our opponents’ defensive third.”

Bird joins another former Eastleigh player, defender Jamie Turley, at Rodney Parade.