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Fordyce revels in Linfield dream

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Fresh faces: Linfield manager David Jeffrey and his assistant Brian McLaughlin welcome the club’s new signings Daryl Fordyce, Gary Browne and Albert Watson to Windsor Park last night

Fresh faces: Linfield manager David Jeffrey and his assistant Brian McLaughlin welcome the club’s new signings Daryl Fordyce, Gary Browne and Albert Watson to Windsor Park last night

Fresh faces: Linfield manager David Jeffrey and his assistant Brian McLaughlin welcome the club’s new signings Daryl Fordyce, Gary Browne and Albert Watson to Windsor Park last night

Daryl Fordyce last night spoke of his “dream move” to his boyhood club Linfield — and he isn’t going to lose any sleep over criticism coming his way from fuming Glentoran fans.

Fordyce has left the Oval after a four-year spell in which he tasted title glory but his heart lies at Windsor Park where he is ready to put pen to paper in a three-year deal when his release form is secured.

Any transfer involving the two biggest clubs in Northern Ireland football will divide opinion but the 24-year-old will have no regrets and he chases more silverware.

The former Northern Ireland Under-21 international was at Windsor Park last night undergoing a medical alongside two other new Linfield signings, Albert Watson and Gary Browne.

It may take some time, though, for his big move to sink in. Certainly, Glentoran fans will say the same.

“My dream has come true,” admitted Fordyce. “I’m from Sandy Row, I grew up supporting Linfield and now I have the opportunity to play for them.

“They are the team I have always supported and I am thrilled they believe I can do a job for them. I gave everything for Glentoran when I played for them — I scored against Linfield with my right foot, left foot and head. Now I will show the same commitment to Linfield.

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“I’m very excited about what the future holds for me now and I can’t wait for my first game. Moving between clubs is part and parcel of football and although some fans will be disappointed they will have to respect and accept my decision.

“I have to make my own decisions in my career. It was a tough decision to take but it hasn’t been

taken lightly. I am where I want to be and I feel brilliant.

“I noted that Aidan O’Kane has moved from Linfield to Glentoran and it just so happens that there is a big rivalry between the Big Two. Players want to play for the bigger clubs and I want to play for the biggest club, the one I grew up supporting.

“I expect that Glentoran fans will not be happy but I’ve had Linfield fans hurling abuse at me when my friends have been amongst Blues supporters and you just have to keep your head down, work hard and keep doing what is asked of you.

“Criticism will not affect my performance. I will give my all as I have always done for the teams I have played for.”

Glentoran, clearly unimpressed with Fordyce’s decision to leave, put a statement on their website saying the club “retracted any contract offers” but Fordyce maintains that the only offer he received was from Portadown.

When he received a call from Blues boss David Jeffrey, his mind was made up.

“I came close to joining Linfield last season but the Glens wanted Mark Miskimmin in a swap deal and when I scored five goals in the first game of the season they decided to keep me,” added Fordyce who spent four years at Portsmouth before joining the Glens in 2007.

“The situation is different but there were no offers from Glentoran. I have to look after my own interests as a footballer’s career is short. Clubs also make their own decisions and many will be surprised to see a legend Paul Leeman told is surplus to requirements at Glentoran.

“I have to make the most of the opportunities that come my way.”


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