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Former Ireland U21 and Huddersfield Town defender joins Sligo Rovers

Danny Kane is back in the League of Ireland, having had a brief spell as a Cork City player last year.

Danny Kane tussling with Germany's Jani Serra during last October's Euro U21 qualifier.
Danny Kane tussling with Germany's Jani Serra during last October's Euro U21 qualifier.
Image: Imago/PA Images

SLIGO ROVERS HAVE signed former Republic of Ireland U21 international Danny Kane until the end of the season.

Kane joins Liam Buckley’s side as a free agent, having been unattached since his departure from Cork City in January.

The versatile 22-year-old, who can play across the back four, is awaiting international clearance ahead of tomorrow night’s visit of Waterford to the Showgrounds.

He has officially become a Sligo player after training with the club in recent months in a bid to recover from a troublesome ankle injury.

The Dubliner returned to action on Monday night as the Bit O’ Red recorded a 1-0 win in a friendly against English League One outfit Accrington Stanley. 

“I’m delighted,” said Kane. “It has been a long recovery but I’m happy to have been here for it. The lads are a fantastic group and it’s a great environment to be in.

“I met Liam Buckley for the first time in January in Dublin and he ticked every box for me. I ended up going to Sligo the next day. He said I could do my recovery with a view to joining and the club would be totally open to me, help me and be part of things, which was great.

“It has been frustrating watching on and mentally hard but being around the lads and the staff has been vital for me. They helped me settle in straight away.

“Playing on Monday was a great feeling. I think I did okay and I just need to get sharper. Now that I’m signed I want to show what I can do and get back flying.”

Danny Kane and John Mountney Kane tackling Dundalk's John Mountney during his time as a Cork City player. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Kane joined Cork City in January 2018 after spending four-and-a-half years with Huddersfield Town, where he was unable to make a first-team breakthrough. He started all but one of Ireland’s 10 games in their 2019 European U21 Championship qualifying campaign.

After making nine appearances for Cork City, he joined English National League club AFC Fylde on loan in August of last year. He then parted company with City by mutual agreement back in January, despite having a year remaining on his contract.

“We lined Danny up earlier in the year,” explained Sligo Rovers manager Liam Buckley. “Both sides have had to be patient – it was a bad injury and he’s done the work to get back. We wanted to help him get back because we have a very good player on our hands at his best.

“He’s a baller. He can really play and also defend very well. He has that versatility, and while we have good players in defence so he’ll have lots of competition, we have been low on bodies through the year. Not too long before the injury he was playing for the Ireland U21s and doing well, and we think we can get him back to that form.

“He played in the friendly with Accrington and came through that well. I think he can make a big contribution and I see the hunger in him. His grandmother is from the area, so to have family around is great for him as well.

“We are still looking. This window is difficult to pick up players. We don’t just want to go for someone for the sake of it. There’s still a couple of weeks to go so we are certainly not ruling anything out.”

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Paul Dollery

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