Tuesday 26 March 2019

Séamus: No more £60k deals

Seamus Coleman
Seamus Coleman

Former Sligo Rovers man Seamus Coleman says the days of League of Ireland clubs selling players off for small transfer fees have to end.

Coleman knows all about the notion of an English club getting a bargain buy: Everton fans sing a "sixty grand" song which boasts of the fact that they signed the future Ireland captain from Sligo for a tiny fee of £60,000 back in 2009.

Almost a decade on, the nature of short-term contract in the League of Ireland leaves clubs here in a weak negotiating position when selling players, Cork City netting just €125,000 for Sean Maguire last year while Daryl Horgan and Andy Boyle left Dundalk on a free.

Shamrock Rovers fans expect the imminent sale of Graham Burke, possibly to Preston though there are rival clubs ready to make a bid, with a fee of €300,000 demanded by Rovers.

And Coleman feels that's a fair price for his new Ireland team-mate.

"That's what I think it needs to, be the fees from England to Ireland are very cheap," he says.

"They are getting players on the cheap. You see League One players going for millions here and there.

"Obviously I'm going back nine years, 60 grand, but I would like to see players go for more than what they are."

And Coleman admits that players like Burke will need to leave the league if they are to sustain an international career long-term.

"I do think players might have to go over. It's alright coming in and getting a few caps, I know people want to see the lads do well in the league but I want to see lads go over and be really successful for themselves as well," he says.

"Hearing Graham is going over is bad for the league but I'm delighted he gets to show what he can do over there, straight away the recognition becomes a lot more.

"The national team needs more players in the Premier League and Championship," added Coleman.

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