Access exclusive podcasts, interviews and analysis with a monthly or annual membership

Become A Member
Dublin: 7°C Wednesday 28 October 2020

It’s been a Long time: Shane delighted to be heading back to Cork

The Ireland striker returns to his old club with West Brom for a friendly at Turner’s Cross this evening.

Credit: Facebook/CorkCityFC

SHANE LONG IS relishing the chance to return to Turner’s Cross tonight and play for slightly longer than he managed during his Cork City career.

The Ireland striker signed with the Leesiders on a scholarship in 2004 and and featured in one senior game, as a late substitute during a 1-0 win over Bray Wanderers in 2005, before being snapped up by Reading as part of the Kevin Doyle deal later that year.

Tipperary native Long, who played hurling at minor level before decided to concentrate on football, has gone to become a regular in the Irish national team as well as carving out a career in the English top flight.

Now, the 26-year-old is back in the Rebel County with his current club West Brom, who take on Cork City in a friendly tonight (kick-off 7.45pm) as part of their pre-season preparations.

While Cork will no doubt welcome their former player back with open arms tonight (they have created the poster above), Long is looking forward to meeting old friends at the ground.

“It will be the first time that I’ll be back at Turner’s Cross since I played there for Cork,” Long told West Brom’s official website. “I’m looking forward to it, to see some old friends and catch up with people.

“I didn’t get to score, but it was nice to play there and I can’t wait to get back there again.

Cork gave me my start in professional football and I was treated well during my time there, so I have fond memories of the club and the people there.

“I also have a lot of friends still playing for them, like Dan Murray, Neal Horgan, Danny Murphy, and Mark McNulty.

“For me coming into that set-up was great as it was my first introduction to professional football and it was a big decision for me to quit hurling for it, but I knew once I went to Cork that I’d made the right decision.”

Just Mario Balotelli playing the Italian national anthem on piano

Arsenal lack class, says Brendan Rodgers

About the author:

Ben Blake

Read next: