Cork City have brought in Burton Albion defender Ryan Delaney on loan until the summer, as the young defender returns to the League Of Ireland to get some first team experience and to add to John Caulfield's options.
Having impressed Albion manager Nigel Clough, Delaney joined the English Championship side last summer from Wexford Youths, whom he helped to win the First Division title in 2015.
City boss John Caulfield confirmed the news, saying: “We have been actively looking at bringing in a centre back and we are delighted to bring Ryan in. He obviously knows the league from having played here with Wexford and his form here got him the move to Burton.”
“We obviously had Eoghan O’Connell in on loan from Celtic last year and he did very well for us. The spell here helped him, and I know that was something that came into Ryan’s thinking.
“I know a number of clubs were interested in him, so we are very pleased that he is coming here.
“We have a number of lads from the Wexford and Kilkenny areas, so he would know a few of them. He is a big, strong centre half who can also cover left back, so he is a good addition for us.”
Delaney is a versatile defender and played 51 times , scoring 2 goals during his time with Wexford.
When the move to Burton was announced, then-Wexford manager Shane Keegan spoke in glowing terms about Delaney, saying that his hard work with the South East club had paid off.
"It is a great demonstration of what Wexford Youths' underage is capable of producing,” said Keegan.
“His attitude, application and behavior have been exemplary throughout his time at Ferrycarrig Park".
Cork manager Caulfield will be hoping Delaney will have the same impact O'Connell had when he joined from Celtic 12 months ago.
After impressing during a loan spell with City, O'Connell went back and played in the Champions League qualifiers for Celtic, before heading out on loan to League One side Walsall in January of 2017.
Delaney will be hoping to play his role in getting on course for their main goal for the 2017 season after finishing runners up to Dundalk for the last three seasons.