18 January, 2012

Former Cork City captain Dan Murray to return to his spiritual home:

Cork City manager Dunne: happy to re-sign former captain
           Cork City FC manager Tommy Dunne confirmed this evening that (2005) League winning captain Dan Murray is returning to the club on a one-year contract.  Murray is the most successful captain in League of Ireland history having won three League Titles (two with Rovers) and helping Rovers to become the first Irish club to reach the Group Stages of a major European competition.  Murray was a pivotal part of Cork City's 2005 Title winning side, when the club had arguably the best squad in its history.  He was also a major part of the club's six game run in the Inter-Toto Cup the previous season and the 2006 Champions League campaign when City were eventually knocked out by previous European Cup winners Crvena Zvezda (Red Star Belgrade).  Tommy Dunne said he has not decided whether Murray will be captain or not for the 2012 season.  Dan Murray re-joins City on a free transfer having been released by Shamrock Rovers last week.

COMING HOME: Former City captain Dan Murray

                 Tommy Dunne said that player numbers are tight for the 2012 season; with a squad of 18/19 (maximum); including three goalkeepers.  He said that having only 16 outfield players wasn't ideal but that that was what he had to deal with for this season.   The manager also confirmed that some players would be coming through from the Under-19's.  I mentioned to him a few potential signings, including two former City players Joe Gamble and Denis Behan.  I imagined that the two might be interested in returning to Leeside (particularly Cork native Joe Gamble) now that City have returned to the top flight, but the boss confirmed that the two are under contract at First Division Limerick, so have not been spoken to.   The manager also mentioned former City star (and Ireland international) Colin Healy, but that after talks with the player, the Ballincollig native is going to try to get a club in England having been released by Ipswich Town before Christmas.  The manager confirmed also that Title winning star Graham Cummins is under contract for the new season.

Dunne wishes all LoI managers good luck for new season 
Asked for his expectations for the 2012 season;  Tommy Dunne said that the Premier Division would be a big step up from the First Division and that a top six finish would represent a  "fantastic season"  for the club.  "We are hoping to conduct ourselves properly in the top flight but we know that it's going to be really tough because all clubs will start the season hoping to be in the division for the following season."  Dunne also said that the club would do everything they can to win a trophy in the new season but that the league would remain the priority.  When asked if he'd like to wish former foe Roddy Collins  "Good luck"  for the new season (!)  Dunne chuckled before adding:  "I'd like to wish all managers 'good luck' for the new season but hope that they finish behind Cork City."   A wise answer from a wise football man.
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