Monday 19 March 2018

Tagliapietra predicts bright future for Hamilton's 'magic' Michael McGovern

Hamilton's Lucas Tagliapietra, pictured, hopes Accies can retain the services of keeper Michael McGovern
Hamilton's Lucas Tagliapietra, pictured, hopes Accies can retain the services of keeper Michael McGovern

Hamilton keeper Michael McGovern deserves a big summer move, according to team-mate Lucas Tagliapietra.

But the big Brazilian defender just hopes the Northern Irishman decides to stay put at Accies.

McGovern is out of contract at the end of the season and has been liked with a move to Hibernian when his deal expires.

Hamilton boss Martin Canning has already set up renewal talks but McGovern is in no rush to make a decision.

The 31-year-old has the chance to put himself in the shop window when he appears for Michael O'Neill's Green and White Army at next summer's Euro 2016 finals and he could wait until after the tournament to make up his mind.

Tagliapietra, speaking ahead of Saturday's Ladbrokes Premiership visit of Ross County, said: "We all know Mikey is magic. He is a good keeper. Of course every centre-back wants to have a Mikey behind him.

"We know he is working hard and gets what he deserves. But I'd also like it if he stays here.

"It's great having someone like him in the team. He is a leader and gives us security. I feel safe with him in the side.

"I have played with some good goalkeepers in my career but here, Mikey is the captain. He has different qualities as well as experience. He passes that on to us and that's great for a young player like me."

Like McGovern, Tagliapietra is keeping his options open.

The 25-year-old has led a nomadic existence since leaving his homeland in 2011, having also had spells in Hong Kong and Moldova.

His New Douglas Park deals expires at the end of the current campaign but Tagliapietra insists he will continue to follow his dreams, even if he finds it difficult saying goodbye each time he moves on.

"It's hard not to get attached to guys in your dressing room because as a player, they are not just a team-mate, sometimes they are a friend," he explained.

"When you move on, that can be the hardest thing in football. It's your career, though, so you sometimes have to make those hard decisions.

"I know what it's like. I'm always far from home. When you move to a new country, the players and staff at your new club can become like your family. When you have to leave it is difficult.

"But I'm not thinking about settling down in one place yet. I'm just thinking about doing my best here and see what the future brings because I have my dreams as well."

Press Association

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