Friday 21 July 2017

Daryl Horgan tempted by 'nearly disgusting' money in England

Shamrock Rovers v Dundalk: Live, RTE2, 7.45

Daryl Horgan. Photo: Sportsfile
Daryl Horgan. Photo: Sportsfile
Dundalk’s Daryl Horgan collected his player of the month award this week. Picture: Sportsfile
Cian Tracey

Cian Tracey

Daryl Horgan is doing his best to block out the noise coming from the outside and deflect the praise onto Dundalk, but his stellar performances have put him in the spotlight and the shop window.

Earlier this week, Horgan picked up his fourth SSE Airtricity/SWAI player of the month award, and his goal-scoring performance against Cork City on Tuesday night hasn't gone unnoticed outside Ireland.

Being linked with a move to England is nothing new for a player who has brought his game to a new level this season, at the age of 24.

According to the Galway native, Barnsley and Torquay are the only clubs to have ever showed any 'real interest' in him, but yesterday Ipswich manager Mick McCarthy said Horgan was very much on the club's radar as well as another "100 scouts".

For the time being at least, Horgan is happy at Dundalk but come the end of the year, he is a free agent.

He has been down this road before, however, and with the likes of Everton also said to be tracking his progress, with so many big games coming up with Dundalk, Horgan is refusing to get sidetracked.

"I've been around long enough to know that talk is cheap," he says.

"You're not going to make enough money here to retire on, or even take a couple of years out. That's just unfortunately the way it is in Ireland.

PFAI player of the year nominees – (from left) Young Player of the Year nominee Brandon Miele (Shamrock Rovers), Player of the Year nominees Daryl Horgan and Richie Towell (both Dundalk), and Goalkeeper of the Year nominee Micheal Schlingerman in Abbotstown yesterday
PFAI player of the year nominees – (from left) Young Player of the Year nominee Brandon Miele (Shamrock Rovers), Player of the Year nominees Daryl Horgan and Richie Towell (both Dundalk), and Goalkeeper of the Year nominee Micheal Schlingerman in Abbotstown yesterday

"There just isn't the money in the game and once you know that, there isn't an issue with it. If it comes to it you'd have to make that decision and see what the conditions and offers are - if there even are offers. There's no guarantee there will be.

"You'd have to consider everything that is thrown your way, but I can't see myself leaving Dundalk for something that's not going to be of a higher standard or a similar standard.

"The financial aspects are that there's so much money in England it's nearly disgusting but, look, you'd have to see and at the minute I'm really, really happy at Dundalk."

The lure of England is obvious, but Horgan is aware of some cautionary tales.

Ignite

He still keeps in contact with his former Dundalk team-mate Richie Towell , whose move to Brighton has yet to ignite, although injuries have played a part.

The financial rewards may not be the same in Ireland but Dundalk's potential is something that is enticing in itself.

"With the Europa League there is potential there to possibly do something along the lines of BATE Borisov," Horgan says.

"They've really kicked on in the Champions League. At one stage they were a small club who hadn't qualified for years. Then they were in five out of seven group stages and the money just rises from there."

The rumour mill will continue in overdrive for the next few months, during which time Horgan will hope to break into the Ireland squad.

The clamour for his inclusion has been just as loud as the other noises Horgan has been dealing with, but he pointed out that Martin O'Neill has never spoken to him.

So does he think he can play for Ireland while still at Dundalk?

"I don't know," Horgan concedes. "That would be up to Martin O'Neill and if he thinks we're playing at a standard that is up to the Championship or Premier League.

"Obviously we're not playing at a Premier League standard but the Europa League is very high, it's a different style of football and probably more akin to international football at times.

"To hear him speaking highly of me is fantastic but it doesn't really overly affect me."

Dundalk's title hunt resumes against Shamrock Rovers this evening and Horgan will continue to do his talking on the pitch.

Irish Independent

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