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Dublin: 6°C Friday 15 January 2021
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Irish striker Clarke signs with League Two side for third time

The 32-year-old Cork-born forward first played for Bradford between 2014 and 2017.

Billy Clarke (file pic).
Billy Clarke (file pic).
Image: Adam Davy

BILLY CLARKE HAS signed for Bradford City on a one-year deal, it has been confirmed.

The 32-year-old Cork-born forward first played for the club between 2014 and 2017 — scoring 25 goals in 144 games — in addition to having a four-month stint there in 2019.

Clarke leaves after a spell with League Two rivals Grimsby Town, whose boss Ian Holloway said he wanted the player to stay.

“I am absolutely over the moon to be back here, again. I was devastated to leave last time and to get the chance to return is unbelievable,” Clarke told the official Bradford website.

“The time I had with Stuart McCall and Kenny Black was brilliant and we were close to achieving big things. It was the most enjoyable season of my career – to date.

“I am determined to right the wrongs and bring my experience and quality back. Hopefully, we can enjoy a really successful season.”

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City boss McCall added: “Billy is a player Kenny and I obviously know very well, and one who knows this football club inside out. 

“He was part of a team we had in our previous spell here, which came so close being successful, so he probably feels there is a little bit of unfinished business. 

“I am naturally aware his second spell was not as memorable, but the reason for bringing Billy back is based not only on his quality and character, but also on his performances for a Grimsby Town side which was resurgent after he joined them, last season.

“I know how desperate his former manager, Ian Holloway, was to re-sign him — as were Grimsby’s supporters.

After studying many of his games closely in recent months, I know he still has the fitness and desire to come back here and be a success with us. 

“He fits into our mentality of setting high standards, both in matches and on the training ground, and has the strong belief and positive mindset we want to see in all of our players.” 

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Paul Fennessy

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