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Irish Mirror
Irish Mirror
Paul O'Hehir

Derry City believe they have signed 'one of the best in the country'

Derry City believe they have secured the services of ‘one of the best midfielders in the country’ in Adam O’Reilly.

As revealed last week, the Candystripes beat off stiff competition in Ireland, England and Scotland to sign the Cork man who was free to leave Preston North End.

O’Reilly, who has signed a two-year deal after making the move from Deepdale, is no stranger to the league having enjoyed a successful loan spell with St Pat’s last year.

But O’Reilly, 21, was eager to join forces with Ruaidhri Higgins and his Derry City side that finished second to Shamrock Rovers last year before lifting the FAI Cup in November.

And O’Reilly is already up to speed with his new surroundings having joined the Derry squad in Spain over the weekend for their training camp in Alicante.

But while he feels he has made the right move, the one-time Waterford loanee admits he had to mull over the variety of offers on the table.

O’Reilly said: “This has definitely been the most difficult decision to make in my career so far, having had so many great clubs looking for me.

“But I was really impressed with what Ruaidhri had to say. I want to play at the highest level possible and I have to challenge myself to do that.

“I played against Derry last year and I know how good a side they are and the potential that exists at the club.

“There is an awful lot of quality in the squad and there will be real competition for places.”

O’Reilly, who will be eyeing a title charge, continued: ‘It’s clear that there’s a great bunch of lads at the club and it looks like a good changing room to be a part of.

“I want to push myself as a player, so this was the move for me.”

Candystripes boss Higgins feels O’Reilly will be a key component to their title push this season as they bid to close the gap on champions Shamrock Rovers.

And he believes all-action O’Reilly has all the attributes to make an instant impact on a side pushing for even more silverware.

Higgins said: “I’m delighted to add one of the best midfielders in the country. He gives us a completely different dynamic to what we have.

“It was clear from our discussions that he has an unbelievable drive to maximise his potential.

“He has shown us a real steely determination and that’s the type of player we want here. He has scope to improve as well and we’ll look to help him to do that.”

Higgins added: “I believe it’s a great fit for both parties and we’re really looking forward to working with Adam.”


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