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Dublin: 8 °C Saturday 17 November, 2018
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In-demand Aiden McGeady set for permanent move to the Championship

Sunderland and Middlesbrough are among the clubs understood to be interested in the Irish international.

Aiden McGeady (file pic).
Aiden McGeady (file pic).
Image: EMPICS Sport

IRELAND INTERNATIONAL AIDEN McGeady looks certain to leave Everton on a permanent deal this summer, though his precise destination remains unclear.

McGeady impressed during a loan stint with Preston last season after finding himself out of favour at Goodison Park.

The 31-year-old managed eight goals in 32 league starts for the Lancashire club, and was named the club’s Player of the Season owing to a series of fine performances.

The Toffees are understood to be happy to let the winger leave, with McGeady not starting a game in the Premier League since January 2015, despite his current contract not running out until the end of the 2017-18 campaign.

Preston had hoped to sign McGeady on a permanent deal, but boss Simon Grayson’s move to Sunderland appears to have thrown that potential deal into serious doubt.

According to a report in the Telegraph, McGeady is likely to be Grayson’s first signing at Sunderland.

However, the Liverpool Echo report that Middlesbrough are leading the chase for the ex-Celtic star.

Yet McGeady’s good relationship with Grayson may yet sway him towards the Black Cats. The player, who has 90 Ireland caps, heaped praise on the then-Preston coach last February, telling the Lancashire Evening Post:

I’m happy with how things have gone, I like playing under the manager — he has been good for me. I’ve gone from not playing to getting my confidence back and playing the way I can. The manager doesn’t ever get on your case if you lose the ball when trying to make something happen. He appreciates that is what attacking players do, if you try to score goals and create something, there are going to be things that don’t come off.

“I always remember before my debut here, the manager said to me to go and play like I did three or four years ago when everyone was talking about me and I got the move to Russia.”

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Paul Fennessy

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