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Ireland U21 full-back Lyons leaves Bohemians to join rivals Shamrock Rovers

The defender, who says his ambition is to play in the UK, has signed a multi-year deal with the Premier Division champions.

Andy Lyons in Rovers' new away jersey.
Andy Lyons in Rovers' new away jersey.
Image: Shamrock Rovers FC

SHAMROCK ROVERS HAVE announced the signing of Ireland U21 international Andy Lyons. 

The full-back joins the SSE Airtricity Premier Division champions on a multi-year deal from rivals Bohemians. 

Kildare native Lyons made his league debut for Bohs in April 2018 and has gone on to become one of the best young talents in the country. 

Last season, he lined out in all six of their Uefa Conference League games and he is also capped for Ireland at U21 level. 

“I’m absolutely buzzing to get the deal over the line,” said Lyons. “It’s a massive club, obviously in everything they’ve shown in the last few years with their league titles and European runs, and I’m delighted to be part of that now. I’m delighted to be here.

“I got a call from Stephen Bradley and once I started chatting to him and hearing his plans and vision for me, that was something I was really excited about.

England and the UK is my ambition, but he outlined what his plan is for me and I think this is the perfect club for me. Especially at the age I’m at now, going to a full-time set up was something that was big for me.

“There is that European exposure and hopefully some leagues and cups as well. It’s definitely going to aid my development and Stephen has a clear plan in place for me so I’m looking forward to it.”

andy-lyons Lyons is capped for Ireland at U21 level. Source: Brian Reilly-Troy/INPHO

Lyons has been linked with a move across the water in the past, with Crewe Alexandra one of the clubs reportedly interested, but he believes Tallaght Stadium is the best option for now. 

“There was a bit of interest from the UK but I just felt that the next step for me was a full-time club, and the league champions – there’s no better place to go,” he said.

“They’ve won trophies and there’s the European factor as well. They played six games last season and obviously this year we’re hoping to win a few games in Europe and push on to that next level.

My time at Bohs was brilliant and I’ve a lot of friends there. I think not getting Europe with Bohs was very disappointing and my experience last year meant that I just really want to go back there and experience that again. It’s about making that next step for me in my development in my career.”

Rovers boss Bradley added: “Andy has a lot of attributes that we like and that we feel fit how we play. We’ve liked him for a while. We tried to sign Andy a couple of years back and it didn’t quite come off.

“So we’re delighted to get him this time around because he fits our profile of player and how we try to play. When we had a conversation, it was pretty straightforward. Andy recognised that he wanted to be with a team that is winning and competing for things.

“It’s a chance to improve every aspect and we obviously represented that chance and that opportunity for him.”

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Meanwhile, Plymouth Argyle are keen to bring in Georgie Kelly.

The 25-year-old was the League of Ireland’s top goalscorer in 2021, bagging 26 goals in all competitions for Bohemians.

However, Kelly has made it clear that he wants to a fresh challenge and League One side Argyle are hoping to secure the Donegal native’s signature — having added former St Patrick’s Athletic midfielder Alfie Lewis to their squad. 

“He’s a good footballer,” manager Steven Schumacher told Plymouth Live. ” He’s someone who we have had a look at, the same as we did with Alfie.

“I don’t want to comment too much because he’s just somebody we are interested in. As soon as we have some more news then you will be first to know!”

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