Ronan Doherty is relishing a reunion with Paddy McLaughlin following completion of his switch from Institute to Cliftonville.
He had attracted the attentions of clubs such as Derry City, Glenavon, Coleraine and Ballymena United having proven a revelation for ’Stute last season.
Despite signing a new deal as recently as January, the lure of Europa League football and the chance to work with McLaughlin again was too good to turn down.
“I can’t wait to get started,” said Doherty on the Cliftonville website. “It’s great to be joining such a big club where there are so many quality players and hopefully I can come in and play a big part.
“Paddy McLaughlin gave me the call a year ago about coming to ’Stute and, when the call came again about moving to Cliftonville, I couldn’t wait to make it happen and I’m very pleased to get everything done.”
Boss McLaughlin was also thrilled following weeks of negotiations between the clubs over a fee.
“It’s great to have brought Ronan to Cliftonville,” said McLaughlin. “At Institute last season, it didn’t seem to matter whether we won, drew or lost, opponents were always asking me who our number six was because people were impressed with him week after week.
“He stepped into the Premiership and took to it straight away.
“We always believed he could keep getting better and better and I’m delighted to get his signature for Cliftonville.”
Derry City boss Declan Devine considers Conor McDermott’s loan move to Cliftonville as the perfect deal for all parties involved.
“Conor needs game-time to get his fitness levels to the level they were at before his injury,” said Devine. “He’s working with a man we know well and who we can communicate well with.
“He gets the opportunity to play between 20 and 25 games and possibly a game in Europe and then come back to us in pre-season, hopefully in good condition.
“It was a no-brainer for us.
“Conor is a boy I’ve worked with in the past and a boy who I see as having a bright future at Derry City.”