Darren Cole extends his stay at Derry City
The experienced Scotsman had attracted interest from Irish League club, Cliftonville and Derry's League of Ireland rivals, Finn Harps and Sligo Rovers since his contract expired at the end of the 2020 season.
The former Rangers centre half joined the Brandywell club midway through the 2017 campaign and has since made 92 appearances and has put pen to paper on a new deal.
Cole, who turned 28 years-old on Sunday, is the latest player from last season's squad to be retained with Derry boss, Declan Devine admitting he's 'close' to agreeing deals with both Cameron McJannett and James Akintunde.
Commenting on Monday afternoon, the City supremo said Cole, McJannett and Akintunde are players who have proven their quality and commitment to the club.
"We're close but if you ask what we're looking for this year, we're looking for players who have proven their commitment and ability," said Devine.
"Darren Cole has been a fantastic player for the football club. He has also suffered a setback last year with his injury and we probably didn't see the best of him last year because of limited training and preparation for games probably wasn't what it needed to be.
"Certainly there are a lot of clubs looking to speak to Darren Cole," he added. "We're speaking to him on a daily basis and hopefully it's something we can get done."
It's understood the versatile Cole has agreed a new contract which reinforces Devine's defensive options with Eoin Toal, Ciaran Coll and Danny Lafferty already at the club.
Former Stoke City defender, McJannett who made 11 appearances since arriving last August made a significant impression with several commanding displays alongside Toal at the back.
And Devine confirmed he's been in ongoing discussions with the 22 year-old regarding a return to Foyleside.
"Cameron McJannett came in and took to the league like a duck to water. On the back of a disappointing year he was one of the standouts."
English striker Akintunde finished the campaign as the club's joint top scorer on four goals after nine starts and is also on the verge of re-signing for the Brandywell outfit.
"Akintunde started nine league games and scored four goals. He probably wasn't at the fitness levels we needed him to be at but he's a really good person and someone who is determined to do well for himself.
"I really liked working with James last year," continued Devine. "He was a real positive influence but again, we've got the line of communication opened and we're hoping it can be done but there's a lot of things we're trying to work on at the minute in terms of getting together a young, dynamic energetic, predominantly Irish based side.
"At the same time, whenever you're talking about Cole, McJannett and Akintunde, they are people we know how they work, what their attitudes and qualities are. We certainly won't be signing any player blindly.
"We won't be diving into any signings," he insisted. "We have to learn from mistakes made in the past. We certainly won't be signing players blind which we probably did a bit last year in terms of having to go on recommendations.
"It's something we won't do this year. We have to have absolute clarity on everyone we bring to the club and our work behind the scenes has to be spot on. They have to be the right fit for the club."
While talks with ex-Finn Harps winger, Karl O'Sullivan broke down, it's understood Derry is in the race to sign exciting Cliftonville winger, Conor McMenamin.
The 25-year-old was the subject of enquiries from teams both north and south with Glentoran, Crusaders and Larne are all interested in the left-sided talent.