Belfast Telegraph

World Cup 2018

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Why Sammy Clingan is 'worth his weight in gold' as midfielder pens new Glenavon deal

Sammy Clingan is staying at Glenavon.

There had been rumours the former Northern Ireland international could be off but the 34-year-old has penned a new one-year deal at Mourneview Park.

Clingan joined the Lurgan Blues last summer after a frustrating season at Linfield. He went on to become a key cog in Gary Hamilton's well-oiled machine as Glenavon sealed a third-placed finish in the Danske Bank Premiership.

Clingan netted 12 goals and also proved invaluable in helping upcoming midfield stars Bobby Burns, who has joined Hearts, and Mark Sykes.

As a result, manager Gary Hamilton is over the moon that his midfield maestro is staying for another campaign.

“Sammy was brilliant for us last season, not just on the pitch – we all know his ability and the talent he has and what he brought to the team – but more so as well, off the pitch, his professionalism, the example he set for the younger players, the way he goes about his business, his attitude in training and everything he does,” he told the club website.

“Anybody that knows him knows he’s a tremendous guy and somebody you really enjoy working with and having about the club. I feel with the youthfulness of our squad at the minute, it’s so important to have people like Sammy and Jonny Tuffey around. We all know their footballing talent and ability but there’s also the massive reason of what they bring in terms of helping the kids and the examples they set for the young kids. That’s why we brought the likes of Winkie Murphy, Eddie McCallion, Davy Rainey, Ciaran Martyn and boys like that to the club.

“Having Sammy on board for another season is brilliant news for the football club and hopefully he can have another season on the pitch like he did this year. He definitely contributed a lot – if you’d have told me we were going to get 11 or 12 goals out of Sammy this year, I would have laughed! Albeit a lot of the goals were penalties, that’s an important job in the modern era; having a good penalty taker is worth its weight in gold as well.”

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