Belfast Telegraph

Crusaders set to sign ten-goal Premiership striker

By Billy Weir

Danske Bank Premiership leaders Crusaders are set to bolster their already formidable attack with the addition of sought-after striker Darren Murray.

It is believed that Murray's current side, Warrenpoint Town, have accepted a bid from the Seaview club which will see the north Belfast man return to familiar territory.

Murray has already bagged double figures this season for the struggling Milltown outfit and his arrival at the Crues just as they have moved ominously to the top of the league table is a real statement of intent from Stephen Baxter's side.

The 26-year-old scored against Crusaders last month and, of course, played for their near-neighbours Cliftonville previously, as well as spells at Newry City, Donegal Celtic and Portadown.

The final touches have yet to be made to the deal to bring Murray to the Shore Road but it looks likely that he will be joining namesake Stephen in leaving the Mournes.

He joined Glenavon last week, although manager Matthew Tipton expressed his hope that Darren Murray would remain at Warrenpoint with 18 months remaining on his contract.

Meanwhile, Crusaders continued their preparations for the future by getting the highly-rated Ryan Nimick to sign a new contract that takes him up to the end of the 2019-20 season.

The 20-year-old midfielder immediately moves on from Seaview though, having joined Carrick Rangers on loan for the remainder of the season to gain first-team experience.

It sees him reunited with Carrick's first-team coach Andy Hunter, who Nimick played under at the Milk Cup back in 2015.

Carrick chief David McAlinden explained: "We're delighted to get Ryan on board. He's a technically gifted midfield player, who will give us more guile and the ability to create more and score more goals.

"He's someone that Crusaders rate very highly, having signed a two-year deal with them, and with him coming on board until the end of the season, it's a situation where everybody wins. We get the benefit of an exciting player and Ryan and Crusaders get the benefit of us developing him as a player."

Ballinamallard United continued their busy transfer window by bringing former midfielder David Kee back to Ferney Park on loan from Coleraine until the end of the season.

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