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Dublin: 17 °C Monday 3 August, 2020

Double boost for Shamrock Rovers as Burke extends stay and Bolger returns

The club confirmed the loan deals today.

Graham Burke celebrates after the 2019 FAI Cup final.
Graham Burke celebrates after the 2019 FAI Cup final.
Image: Oisin Keniry/INPHO

SHAMROCK ROVERS HAVE announced that Graham Burke and Aaron Bolger have both signed loan deals with the club.

Dubliner Burke has been on loan at Rovers from English Championship side Preston North End — and his stay on home soil will continue until June 2021.

Bolger, who is currently on the books at Cardiff City after making the permanent switch from the Hoops in July 2019, will also return to the League of Ireland club until the end of the 2020 season.

“We are delighted to confirm the extension of Graham Burke’s loan deal from Preston which will see Graham remain with the Hoops until June 2021,” a statement on the Shamrock Rovers website reads.

“We can also announce the return on loan of Aaron Bolger who will join up with the squad next week. Aaron had a very successful time with the club before his transfer to Cardiff City. The loan will run until the end of the 2020 season.”

Former Ireland underage international Bolger moved to Cardiff after impressing on a six-month loan deal, though he has yet to make a first-team appearance there.

The 20-year-old Wicklow midfielder now returns to Stephen Bradley’s side — for whom he made his debut in 2016 — seeking regular game time as he furthers his development.

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aaron-bolger Aaron Bolger on the ball in 2018. Source: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

26-year-old Burke rejoined Rovers on a year-long loan deal in July 2019 after his transfer to Preston and loan spell at Gillingham. 

Having become the first Rovers player to be capped by Ireland in 32 years in 2018, Burke starred as the club tasted FAI Cup success last season. Before the Covid-19 enforced layoff, he made three appearances and scored six goals in this campaign.

Five of them came against Cork City in February, though he also sustained a calf injury that day. He’s on the bench this evening, as Rovers face Finn Harps at Tallaght Stadium.

“Everyone at PNE would like to wish Graham the best of luck while with the Hoops,” a statement from his parent club Preston reads. The new loan agreement will see Burke through to the end of his Lilywhites contract.

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Emma Duffy

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