herald

Wednesday 18 October 2017

Move South' is perfect for me: Clifford

IT'S A BIG drop from his days at Chelsea to a stint in England's fourth tier with Southend United, but Dubliner Conor Clifford hopes his move to Southend can see his career settle down.

The midfielder was a highly rated youngster, with form which earned him call-ups to the senior Ireland squad and he was on the bench four times as an unused sub for Giovanni Trapattoni.

Allowed to leave Chelsea before the end of last season, Clifford had a short spell with Leicester City before he hooked up with Phil Brown at Southend, the League Two side also signing fellow Dubliner Don Cowan this week.

Clifford came on as a late sub in the first league game of the season, a 1-0 win over Plymouth, and he hopes to reap the benefits of the move.

"It's been a tough few years for me and I've been travelling all over the country on loan so I'm glad to have a permanent home now," said Clifford.

NO COVENTRY EXIT: MURPHY

FORMER Ireland keeper Joe Murphy insists that he's staying with crisis club Coventry City.

It was claimed Coventry – who are without a home and who started the League One campaign with a ten-point deduction – would be forced to offload their biggest earners, including Dubliner Murphy.

But Murphy says he's staying. "The gaffer had a meeting with myself, Carl Baker and Leon Clarke after the news about liquidation and the ten-point penalty. The club want to keep everybody here," he said.

"It's a tough time – a real downer; everybody wanted to start the season on zero points, everybody wants to be playing at The Ricoh.

"I feel sorry for the gaffer and the fans but it's out of our hands and we've just got to get on with it."

MCGRATH DEAL

VETERAN Irish midfielder John McGrath has hooked up with non-league side Alfreton Town.

The Limerick-born player, capped six times at U21 level, was released by Burton Albion at the end of last season and now he's decided to has dropped into the Conference.

– AIDAN FITZMAURICE

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