Belfast Telegraph

Derry hang on to Curtis after Swedish deal falls through

Dundalk v Derry City, FAI Cup first round: Oriel Park, Tomorrow, 6.30pm

By Eoin Wilson

Ronan Curtis will be in the Derry City squad for tomorrow's trip to Dundalk after turning down a move to Swedish club Ostersunds.

The two clubs had agreed a fee for the transfer of the 21-year-old on Thursday and Curtis flew out to Sweden on Friday to complete the deal. However after failing to agree personal terms the deal is now dead.

Nevertheless, City boss Kenny Shiels insists the club will not stand in the way of any player looking to further their career.

"Young local players doing well will have opportunities to get a move," he explained.

"We will not stand in the way of young players furthering their career and that's the message we want to send out.

"This is the pathway we want to create. We have to make sure that young players about the city understand that Derry City is a club which promotes young players getting a career out of football, not just with Derry City, but further than that, and if they excel the way Ronan Curtis has one then we will support them 100%.

"We are a club who wants to do well in our domestic league but we do have a priority to the players that they don't get held back."

City are closing in on European qualification via the league but their last chance of silverware this season rests with the FAI Cup.

Away to Dundalk however is arguably the most difficult draw possible.

"Hopefully we can go there and give a good account and see where it takes us," Shiels said.

"It's always a difficult game because they have lots of good players.

"We're still smarting from the semi-final last year (against Dundalk) when the penalty that wasn't a penalty put us out of the cup.

"They got another penalty this week in the semi-finals of the League Cup so we just hope we can have a strong referee.

"We have a good dynamic at the minute and there's good confidence there and we want to take that with us to Oriel Park."

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