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Dublin: 18 °C Saturday 8 August, 2020

Portsmouth add former Ireland international striker to their growing Irish contingent

David Forde also joined the League Two club earlier this summer.

Hunt won three international caps for Ireland.
Hunt won three international caps for Ireland.
Image: EMPICS Sport

LEAGUE TWO SIDE Portsmouth have signed Irish forward Noel Hunt on a one-year deal.

The Waterford native has already featured for the south coast club in pre-season, after he failed to agree a contract extension with his former side Southend United.

Hunt, who scored four goals in 21 appearances for the League One club last season, revealed to Portsmouth’s official website that he turned down clubs from higher up in the Football League to join the Fratton Park club.

“This is a fantastic club. They have a great reputation and manager, so it was a no-brainer for me,” Hunt said.

“The gaffer wanted me to come down here and see what a professional standard it is. It’s a really high quality.”

“I’ve turned down a few clubs from higher leagues because I felt that this was the right one for me.

“This is a club with plenty of ambition and I spoke to friends of mine who have played here before – like Andy Griffin, Jason Pearce and David Norris – and speak very highly about the place.

“It’ll be great to play in front of such large crowds and it gives you an extra buzz when you take to the pitch.”

Hunt started his career in the League of Ireland with Shamrock Rovers, before a prolific spell in Scotland with Dundee United earned him a move to English Championship side Reading, with spells at Leeds United and Ipswich Town following.

The 33-year-old striker, who won the last of his three Ireland caps in 2009, will be joined at Portsmouth by fellow Irish players Enda Stevens, Adam Barton and club captain Michael Doyle, as well as goalkeeper David Forde, who joined the club on a season-long loan move from Millwall earlier this summer.

Portsmouth, who are managed by former Sligo Rovers manager Paul Cook, start their league season at home to Carlisle United on Saturday.

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Shane Costello

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