Colm Horgan has become the latest player to sign for Sligo Rovers this morning as the Bit O’ Red move closer to completing an exciting squad at the Showgrounds ahead of the new season.
Horgan has joined Rovers after spending the 2020 campaign at Derry City.
The 26-year-old moved to Cork City from his hometown club Galway United in 2018 where he was a very consistent performer for the Tribesmen over many years.
Horgan’s brother Daryl is a former Rovers player.
Speaking after signing this morning, he said: “I’m very excited. When I got the call, Liam didn’t have to say a lot to be honest. His name and the club’s name speak for themselves. I think the performances last year after the break also say a lot.
“I know it’s a brilliantly run-club and that the supporters here are always on hand to give the club an extra push when it’s needed. It’s football-mad here and I’m chomping at the bit to get started to be honest with you
“I enjoyed my year at Derry. There are great people in the club and while we were inconsistent I thought I did okay in my season there. I wish them well. When this opportunity came up, I jumped at it.
“The manager has a proven record of making players better and the club itself has a fantastic reputation.
“There’s European football to come and after fourth-place last season, there has to be an aim to improve on that.”
Horgan is looking forward to trying to securing a starting role on the opening day of the season.
“Fitness isn’t an issue for me. When I went to Derry last season, I missed the first few weeks of pre-season and it didn’t affect me. I keep fit and I try to be physically and mentally ready. There are over five weeks to go now which is great. I know there’ll be plenty of quality players here. I know the likes of Garry Buckley from Cork, Dave Cawley was at Galway. The league is small so I’m familiar with everyone.
“The full-backs are all very good, competition is going to be there at a club like Sligo Rovers so I’m just going to do what I can to get in the team. I play mostly on the right but I can play on either side.”
Liam Buckley said: “Colm brings fantastic experience to the group. We know all about his ability from keeping track on him in the league over the years, I’ve enquired about him before so it’s great to be able to bring him here today.
“He comes to us at a very good age. He covers the right side but can also operate on the left and has done many times over the years. He’s a good defender and gets up and down the flank well. It really strengthens us. We’ve got Robbie McCourt, Lewis Banks, Colm and from a squad point of view it’s fantastic because there’s lots of versatility there.
“There was a point at the start of last season where we were down to one or two fit defenders because of injury. We just hope to avoid all that this year with a bit of luck. It really went against us last season. We’d love to start the season with this compliment of defenders because it would give us lots of options. Colm is a great signing for us and I think he’ll adapt very quickly. He’ll be training with us straight away this morning.”
Buckley said he may not be finished with squad additions. Mark Byrne is contracted as a professional from last year and continues to catch the eye, while fellow IT scholarship students Scott Lynch and Darren Collins will be formally added to the group shortly as they continue to progress and contribute to the first-team picture.
It is the academy players who are also giving the Rovers boss something even further to think about. Kailin Barlow, Conor Walsh, Jason Devaney, Peter Maguire, Cillian Heaney are involved in early days of training.
Buckley said: “There are one or two more signings in the mix possibly. We’ll see where that goes. The recruitment has gone quite well, I’m very happy with the group we’ve put together so far.
“The young players with us are also really adding something to training. I’m looking at them and from when they trained with us last summer to now, the ‘jump’ in development is very clear to see. It’s exciting. They’re in my mind, there’s no doubt about that. The opportunity is there for them also. Overall we’re in a good place now and if we can get through pre-season, we’ll be very pleased.”