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Saturday 4 February 2023 Dublin: 11°C
PA Archive/PA Images Wes Hoolahan looks set to take his career overseas.
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Calderwood left disappointed as Hoolahan opts to pursue overseas opportunity
The former Republic of Ireland international has decided not to sign for League Two side Cambridge United.

CAMBRIDGE UNITED MANAGER Colin Calderwood revealed today that Wes Hoolahan won’t be joining the club for the 2019-20 season.

Last week, Calderwood stated that he was “very hopeful” of completing a deal to bring Hoolahan to the League Two outfit ahead of the new campaign.

Having been released by West Bromwich Albion, the former Republic of Ireland playmaker has been training with Cambridge in recent weeks. He also appeared in several of their pre-season fixtures, including Saturday’s goalless draw with Ipswich Town.

However, Calderwood was unable to hide his disappointment when telling Cambridge United’s official website that Hoolahan will instead pursue an undisclosed offer from overseas.

“Unfortunately Wes is not going to sign for us,” he said. “He told me yesterday. I think there’s going to be a nice opportunity for him. Because of that, we’ve got no hold on him and it just suits him and his family in a nice way. We wish him all the best.”

Calderwood was full of praise for the 37-year-old Dubliner and the impact he had during his brief spell as part of the set-up in Cambridge. 

“It’s a blow for us,” the former Tottenham defender said. “We had hoped, and the indication was, that he was going to be a very important factor in helping us to achieve what we want to achieve this season. 

“What we have to do is take the moments that he’s been here, and in that short period he has already lifted and improved the standard of training. He has also shown the rest of the lads the different qualities that are required. He’s someone who has played at the very top.”

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Following a 10-year spell at Norwich City, Hoolahan stayed in the Championship last season by signing for West Brom. He retired from international football in February 2018 after winning 43 senior caps for Ireland.

Calderwood added: “I have absolutely no complaints. I really enjoyed having him around in an environment where he has definitely helped everyone, not just the senior players. 

“He’s been a great professional and person with everybody, from the youngest players to the oldest in the group.”

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