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Cork City have made a firm statement of intent with their new signing

Midfielder Greg Bolger has been brought in from St. Patrick’s Athletic while four players have left the club.

Image: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

Updated at 13.57

AFTER SUFFERING A slender defeat to Dundalk in the FAI Cup final, Cork City manager John Caulfield promised there would be changes ahead of the new season.

And he’s stuck to his word.

The Leesiders, who also finished as runners-up to Stephen Kenny’s side in the league, have announced the signing of Greg Bolger from St. Patrick’s Athletic.

The 27-year-old midfielder has been in demand this year with Scottish club Motherwell tabling a bid for him in the summer only for Pat’s to block the move.

Bolger, who won a Premier Division title, FAI Cup and League Cup during his four years in Inchicore, commented later that he ‘wasn’t too happy’ about how everything unfolded before adding ‘that’s football and I have to move on’.

Source: RTÉ Sport/YouTube

At the time, City were also rumoured as being interested in the Wexford native and now they’ve finally got their man.

“Cork City is one of the biggest clubs in the country, if not the biggest”, Bolger said.

“John (Caulfield) has a plan for the year ahead, I think he has a few different ideas he wants to implement with the team and he wants me to be a part of that. I wouldn’t say it was a big choice, obviously Cork City speaks for itself.

Dundalk have obviously set the bar, but I don’t think we will be far away. I think John is bringing in a few players, so I think we will be right there challenging and we could go one better. I want to try and get the club back up to the top where it belongs. I don’t know how many years it has been since this club has had success and the fans are obviously crying out for that; they have come so close and I am sure some of the players here are hurting from that.”

Bolger’s arrival will lead to inevitable questions about possible City departures. Much was made of the average age of the team after the defeat to Dundalk and with the likes of Liam Miller and Colin Healy in their mid-30s, they may not have too much left in the tank.

Greg Bolger with Colin Healy Could Bolger replace Colin Healy in the Cork City midfield? Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Caulfield himself has alluded to the reality of some players moving on during the off-season.

“I am absolutely delighted to have signed Greg. He is probably the top midfielder in the country. He is in the prime of his career and has his best football ahead of him.

He is known for passing ability, his competitiveness and will to win. He is energetic and he brings leadership to our team, which we need.

“The lads who have been here have done fantastically well over the last two seasons and obviously a lot of them will be staying here but, unfortunately, some will be moving on. For me, we have to replace them with more dynamic, energetic players. Greg is probably the best passer of a ball in the league and I think he is going to be a tremendous signing for us.”

The club have also announced that John O’Flynn, Liam Kearney, Kevin O’Brien and Billy Dennehy won’t be returning next season.

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Eoin O'Callaghan

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