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Derry City Turn Down Chance To Re-Sign One Of Their Most Popular Ever Players

Derry City Turn Down Chance To Re-Sign One Of Their Most Popular Ever Players
By PJ Browne Updated
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In late May, with a year still remaining on his contract, Paddy McCourt requested to depart the club for personal reasons.

The 32-year-old wished to return home to Northern Ireland. Early release from his deal was granted by the club.

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Immediately, there was speculation that McCourt would sign for Derry City.

Derry did indeed have to opportunity to re-sign the hugely popular player who left them in 2008. According to manager Kenny Shiels, the funds were there to acquire McCourt's services. However, he decided to eschew the move and instead give youth a chance.

Shiels told the Derry News:

I feel that it's in the best interests of the club, long term, to try and continue this player development programme.

Paddy is one of the best players I have ever seen and, if it had been the start of the season, I would have been desperate to get him in because we would have needed him. But the progress that the young players have made has left me in the mind that I think it would be unfair on them.

I need to be able to look the likes of Josh Daniels, Ronan Curtis, Conor McDermott, Rory Holden, Aaron McEneff and Nathan Boyle in the face and not be a hypocrite.

Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE

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