Collins lands Curran to replace Rafter
RODDY COLLINS has made his first major moves as Derry City manager by agreeing a contract extension with top scorer Rory Patterson and raiding former club Athlone for highly rated young attacker Enda Curran, WRITES DANIEL MCDONNELL.
Patterson, who topped the Premier Division charts with 18 goals in 2013, has signed for another year at the Brandywell. Curran, who spearheaded Athlone's promotion charge under Collins after moving from Salthill Devon, will relocate to Foyleside.
He will replace Michael Rafter, who has switched ends of the country to put pen to paper with Cork City for 2014.
"It's a big club, and there is a lot of history of Tipperary players coming down here and doing well," said 21-year-old Rafter, who only joined Derry from Dundalk last winter.
"I have been very impressed with the way John (Caulfield) goes about his business; he is certainly bringing in winners this year.
"With the players who are coming in, and if John can keep the base of the team from last year, I think we will be up there with the top squads in the league. This club needs to be back in Europe, so we want to be competing for the top four."
Elsewhere, St Patrick's Athletic midfielder Chris Forrester has moved closer to signing a permanent deal with Bristol City after impressing on trial. Drogheda, meanwhile, have re-signed their former captain Paul Crowley, who spent much of last season on the sidelines at Shelbourne.