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Billy Vance flying high in France while Conor Carty signs for St Patrick’s


Dunlavin's Conor Carty has signed for St Patrick's Athletic.

Dunlavin's Conor Carty has signed for St Patrick's Athletic.

Dunlavin's Conor Carty has signed for St Patrick's Athletic.


FORMER Bray Wanderers winger Billy Vance has described getting the chance to go on trial with French football giants Lyon as a dream come true.

Meanwhile, his parent club St. Patrick’s Athletic have added to their squad ahead of the 2023 League of Ireland season with the signing of Conor Carty on loan.

Vance, 18, was basking in a successful season with St. Patrick’s Athletic, with whom he won the U19 National League last year, when his agent was contacted by Lyons’ Academy Director Jean-Francois Vulliez a few months ago.

“When I first hear about it, I was buzzing to have interest from such a big club, but I had to put it to the back of my mind as there was nothing concrete,” he told Get French Football News.

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“A few months later, (Vulliez) called my agent and said, we’d like you to come over and train with us on a trial basis. That was a huge moment, when he told me there was concrete interest.

“It was a dream come true for me to receive interest from such a big club. When I knew it was happening, I had to ramp up everything – my individual training and fitness.

“Getting up in the morning, going for breakfast before training and seeing players that you grew up watching on TV just sitting there – like (Alexandre) Lacazette, as well as World Cup winners, (Nicolas) Tagliafico and (Jerome) Boateng, was crazy.”

While he is hoping to get another call from Lyon, simply knowing that he was good enough to go over to train with the seven-time Ligue 1 champions has him walking on air as he looks to break into the St. Pat’s first team in 2023.

“The main thing in football for me is confidence and the confidence of knowing I was able to go over to Lyon and hold me own is great,” he said.

“Lyon is a huge club, with a great academy and great players, and being around that environment full-time was great, there is lots to take from that.”

Speaking of St. Patrick’s Athletic, the Richmond Park side have confirmed the signing of Conor Carty on loan for 2023. The Dunlavin striker signs from Bolton Wanderers, whom he had joined from Wolverhampton Wanderers last summer.

Most recently, Carty spent time on loan at Oldham Athletic and Gateshead in the English National League before being snapped up by the Saints.

“I’m really happy to be here,” said the 20-year-old. “Tim Clancy was in touch with Bolton, and I had a zoom call with Tim and Alan Mathews, we had some good conversations and they won me over on the call. I’m really looking forward to getting started.

“I also spoke to Eoin Doyle who was at Bolton previously, I know Anto Breslin too from my time at Wolves, they told me a lot about the club and the league, I’m looking forward to training and playing with Doyler and the rest of the squad.

“The lads were saying that St Pat’s have great supporters and get great crowds for the games home and away so I’m really looking forward to playing in those atmospheres and I’ll be doing my best to help the team and the club.”

In other news, reports suggest that Joe Power from Greystones has signed for Bray Wanderers.