'I think I can really kick on and score a lot of goals': Ex-Shamrock Rovers striker agrees to join city rivals St Pat's

Gary Shaw was the Hoops’ top goalscorer and Player of the Season in 2017.

Gary Shaw spent three seasons at Tallaght Stadium before joining St Pat's.
Gary Shaw spent three seasons at Tallaght Stadium before joining St Pat's.
Image: Ciaran Culligan/INPHO

ST PATRICK’S ATHLETIC have made their first new signing of the off-season, agreeing a deal for former Longford Town and Shamrock Rovers striker Gary Shaw.

The Kildare native recently spent three seasons at Tallaght Stadium, finishing the club’s top goalscorer in 2017 while also collecting the Hoops’ Player of the Season award.

Shaw began his career at underage level with Rovers, before taking in spells with Bray Wanderers and Longford, where he helped the Midlanders reach the First Division play-offs.

The 26-year-old is new St Pat’s manager Harry Kenny’s first signing since replacing Liam Buckley a month ago.

All of Lee Desmond, Darragh Markey and Simon Madden have agreed new deals for 2019, with Shaw adding more depth in the final third following a season in which the Saints’ top goalscorer scored nine goals in 2018.

Shaw found less game-time in 2018 than in his first two seasons under Stephen Bradley at Shamrock Rovers.

The player scored 11 times last season but found the back of the net on just three occasions this campaign competing for a starting position alongside Dan Carr. 

It’s great to get the deal done,” Shaw said speaking on Thursday. “When Harry contacted me, I was more than happy to speak to him. It was a fairly easy decision for me and I’m happy to be here.

“This will be my 10th year in the league, so I’ve plenty of experience behind me. I know Harry through different bits and pieces in football.

“Harry’s a new face around the club — a very, very nice fella to speak to. He has new ideas and will bring in new faces, and I think he will be a great manager at this club.”

Gary Shaw dejected after his side conceded a third goal Next season will be Shaw's 10th in League of Ireland football. Source: Gary Carr/INPHO

The striker said that the Inchicore club’s style of football will suit his own, adding that he hopes to put a stop-start final season at Rovers behind him next season at Richmond Park.

I think it’s absoutely perfect,” Shaw explained. “Pat’s get a lot of crosses into the box, get ball into the striker — so I think it’s the ideal team for me to play for in the league.

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“I’ve had my reasons for not doing too well at Rovers last year. But I think the style of play that Pat’s has will really suit me and I think I can really kick on and score a lot of goals.

“Pat’s have a great history and they need to bring silverware back to the club. I think this year is a big year to do that.”

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