Belfast Telegraph

Lowry to keep Linfield No 8 shirt as Stephen joins

By Lisa Gray

The name Lowry will again adorn the Linfield No.8 shirt in the new season, but it will have a different player inside it.

New Blues boss Warren Feeney's newest signing, Stephen Lowry, is expected to take over the jersey that was vacated by his brother Philip, who left Windsor Park for Derry City last week.

After signing a two-year contract at the weekend, former Coleraine midfielder Stephen knows he has some work to do in order to emulate his younger sibling, who was part of the Linfield team that won three successive doubles from 2010 to 2012, including what turned out to be the winning goal in the 2010 Irish Cup final win over Portadown.

"He has great memories of being here and he won trophies, which is something that I really want to do here," said Stephen.

"That's one of the main reasons why I wanted to come to Linfield, I want to win something and I have no doubt that we will be up there competing at the end of the season.

"I would say we're a lot different. I'd be a bit more technical than him, but he is a better goal threat.

"We are different players, but we can play in the same position.

"It's a shame that we couldn't play in the same team together at Linfield, but it's a good move for him to Derry City.

"I wouldn't want to say who is better, but I know that signing for Linfield just a few days after he left the club that I have big boots to fill."

The timing of Stephen's move isn't just ironic in terms of his family connections with Linfield, just 12 months ago he turned down a contract offer from the Blues after former boss David Jeffrey agreed a fee with Coleraine.

Lowry even signed for an extra year at the Showgrounds after that, but the Linfield board backed Feeney by tabling a fresh offer –he couldn't say 'no' twice.

"It's a good move for me, Linfield are one of the biggest clubs in the Irish League, if not the whole of Ireland," said Lowry.

"It's an honour that they came in and paid a fee for me and they were willing to do it last year too."

"I have spoken to the manager at length on the phone and I know his plans for the place and I want to be part of it.

"It's a fresh start at Linfield, but it's going to be a positive one as well."

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