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Derry play waiting game for Celtic bid


Ronny Deila

Ronny Deila

Ronny Deila

DERRY City boss Peter Hutton says it's now up to Celtic to decide on an offer for highly-rated striker Michael Duffy after he impressed during his trial period.

The Bhoys invited Duffy back for a second trial - he was initially over in Glasgow before Christmas - and the forward caught the eye by scoring in a practice game against Newcastle United.

Hutton believes that Duffy, who has been capped at U21 level by Northern Ireland but has not ruled out a switch to the Republic, is capable of playing at a high level and says the Brandywell club are now awaiting a response from Celtic.

"Michael can do no more. Having left a good impression on his first visit when he trained with members of the first team squad and I've been informed that he did everything that was asked of him last week," Hutton told the Derry Journal.

"He raised quite a few eyebrows during the match against Newcastle having netted twice in the 3-1 win.

"However, it's now down to the powers that be at Celtic if they want to sign him," added Hutton.

Celtic know all about Derry's ability to produce players as they signed Niall McGinn - currently starring for SPL leaders Aberdeen - and Paddy McCourt from the Brandywell side. Hutton has expressed his preference for Duffy to spend one more season at Derry, though a transfer fee for Duffy would be most welcome given that the playing budget for next season has been cut.

And Hutton stressed that Duffy has time on his side if a move does not come off this month.

"Michael enjoyed the experience and he's a very levelled headed young man who has opted to take nothing for granted," added Hutton.

"Youth is certainly on his side and I feel he may have got this opportunity much earlier than he had expected.

"We've always had great belief in his ability as a footballer and I've no doubt that he will get the move he hopes for sooner rather than later provided he continues to apply himself the way he has done since arriving at the Brandywell."

Derry are cutting back for the 2015 season with Danny Ventre and Barry Molloy having already left the club.