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Dooley cannot wait to fulfil his full-time dream with Rochdale

 

By Graham Luney

Stephen Dooley says he's living the dream after joining Rochdale from Danske Bank Premiership side Coleraine.

The former Derry City and Cork City midfielder has agreed a two-year deal with the League One club, subject to international clearance.

"It's always been a dream of mine to play over in the English system and Rochdale looks like a brilliant club, so I'm delighted to finally get the deal done," said the 26-year-old, who won a league and cup double with Cork City.

"I played with Ryan Delaney at Cork City last year, and he said it's a brilliant club and he's really enjoying it.

"I looked at the celebrations from the last day of the season and everyone said it was brilliant. I'm looking forward to being a part of it next year.

"I've spoken to the manager and to Brian Barry-Murphy as well, who's obviously from Cork, and that's the link there. It was good to speak to them and they seem like really nice people, so hopefully I can come over in July, meet up with them and get things going.

"It's always something I wanted to give a go just to see if I'm good enough, and hopefully I will be. Every young player growing up aspires to be in the Premier League and the system obviously filters down.

"I've always wanted to give the English leagues a shot and this seems like a brilliant club to try that with."

The Portstewart man made 89 appearances for his hometown club, scoring 13 goals.

Bannsiders boss Oran Kearney said: "As a club we are delighted for Stephen to clinch a move to full-time football.

"It is great that we played a part in Stephen achieving his dream and he certainly goes with our best wishes.

"We can't speak any higher of him and we wish him the best of luck."

Belfast Telegraph

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