Richie Towell departs Dundalk to sign for Championship high-flyers Brighton
Free scoring Dundalk midfielder Richie Towell has signed a two and a half year deal with Championship leaders Brighton.
The recently crowned PFA Player of the Year has made little secret of his desire to move to England and Seagulls manager Chris Hughton admitted last week that they were interested in securing Towell's services.
The 24-year-old hit 25 league goals for Dundalk as they claimed the title, but won't be eligible to play until January 2 when the English transfer window re-opens and he receives international clearance. That rest period will actually suit the player as his girlfriend Kelly is due to give birth to their first child in the next fortnight.
Hughton admits the signing is a coup for the club.
"Richie's had a wonderful season in Ireland and scored a lot of goals for the champions Dundalk from midfield, and that really caught our eye," he said.
"He is something different to the number of very good midfield options we already have here at the club, and I am really looking forward to having him as part of our squad in the New Year.
"He had a lot of good options available for his next move; here in England, in Scotland, in Ireland with Dundalk and in Europe, so we are delighted he has decided to join us.
"He's played a full season since March, but has already made it clear he is keen to be ready to play in January, and keen to begin training with us as soon as possible.
"We will give him some time off for a well-deserved break, as he's played a lot of football in the past nine months, but I am certain he will be ready for us in January and will be an excellent addition to the squad."
Towell found the net 49 times in his 113 games with Dundalk as he won two league titles, an FAI Cup medal and the 2013 Irish PFA Young Player of the Year Award during his three years at Orial Park.
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