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Sligo's Ryan seals Dundee United switch

Bit O’Red captain Richie Ryan has signed a two-and-a-half year contract with Dundee United.

Image: ©INPHO/Cathal Noonan

AIRTRICITY LEAGUE RUNNERS-UP Sligo Rovers will have to build for next season without captain Richie Ryan after the midfielder sealed a move to SPL side Dundee United.

Ryan, 26, will link up with the Tannadice outfit next month after putting pen to paper on a two-and-a-half year deal last night.

The news of Ryan’s departure comes as a blow to the domestic game which looks set to lose another of its big names, Bohemians boss Pat Fenlon, to Edinburgh club Hibernian.

Ryan, who joined the Bit O’Red in 2008 following a brief spell with Royal Antwerp in Belgium, was widely considered to be one of the league’s biggest names and was crowned PFAI Player of the Year in 2010.

The Tipp native now joins a quartet of Dubliners — club captain Jon Daly, Willo Flood, Seán Dillon and Gavin Gunning — at United.

“I’m over the moon, it’s nice to know my future is here at Tannadice for at least the next couple of years and I’m looking forward to the challenge ahead,” Ryan said.

With the number of Irish lads already at the Club, it’ll be a little bit easier for me to settle in. The Irish lads who are here have done well and I know I can bring something to the squad here.

United boss Peter Houston said that Ryan’s signing would add some much needed balance his side’s midfield.

“Richie is a different type of midfielder to those already at the Club,” Houston said.

“He is more of a sitting, defensive player who is strong in the tackle and can pass the ball. He is left footed as well which adds to the balance of our midfield.

“Having played well in excess of 40 games this season for Sligo, he will now head home for a well earned break before returning to training with us in late December with a view to making an impact on our squad in January.”

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Niall Kelly

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