BRENTFORD have shelved a potential move for Derry City’s Patrick McEleney but the Championship outfit are understood to be on the verge of making an offer for midfielder, Michael Duffy.
Duffy, who has also attracted interest from Celtic, has returned to pre-season training with Derry but it’s believed that London club, Brentford are keen to open talks with the ‘Candy Stripes’ in the coming days.
And with the January Transfer Window slamming shut next Monday night, Brentford will need to act swiftly.
A potential move to Brentford certainly hasn’t materialised for McEleney, however, despite impressing during his 10 day trial with Mark Warburton’s men last week.
McEleney was encouraged by his experience at the high flying ‘Bees’ and he believes it will give him the necessary impetus to raise his game ahead of the League of Ireland campaign.
And ‘Fats’ is determined to play an integral role in the goalscoring department this season following the departure of last season’s leading goalscorer, Rory Patterson and with Duffy expected to be on his way.
McEleney netted just nine goals last season but he believes he can fill the goal void left by the departure of Patterson having accepted the fact a potential move to the English Championship has been put on ice for now.
“You can look at it in a lot of different ways,” said McEleney of his trial at Brentford. “I went over and trained and played in a game where I scored and set up a couple of goals.
“They were asking me afterwards what I had taken from my experience and I told them that now I know I can play at that level.
“So if anything, it has boosted my confidence,” he claimed. “I came back and realised I was close to securing a move so it’s good to know. The club told me that I was excellent but they’re pushing to get into the Premiership now.
“I had to do my own training and motivate myself because of my injury during the close season,” he explained. “A couple of people helped me out but it was hard. And to go over there and play, and Brentford are flying at the minute - they’re top of the Championship - and I’m going over after two months out and coming back from an injury. I did really well and I was pleased with my effort considering.
“Of course I’m disappointed because that’s where you want to play. But I’ve had plenty of disappointments in my life and I know that I have to get myself together and get back at it again,” added the former Sunderland player.
“I’m looking forward to concentrating on Derry City now. It’s a new group and everything has been going smoothly since I got back. I feel fit, fitter than I ever was in pre-season so I can’t wait to get started.
“I need more goals and that comes with fitness. Since I was no age I’ve been scoring goals and I know I haven’t scored enough for Derry so I’ll be working on getting a lot more goals this season.”
Should Duffy secure his move to Brentford, McEleney believes there will be more than enough fire-power at the Brandywell to replace the Galliagh man.
“It was the same situation when Stephen McLaughlin left (for Nottingham Forest). Stephen scored 15 goals and people were wondering where the goals were going to come from and Mickey (Duffy) scored 15 odd goals.
“There’s always that rotation of players who can step up to the mark and we always seem to produce top players at Derry and it’s not down to luck.
“There’s Mickey (Duffy), Josh (Daniels), Barry McNamee who all came through. Ryan Curran who can step up and myself. We can all score goals so there’s no real panic.
“There’s no reason why I can’t score more goals and I believe I will to be honest. I’m looking forward to the challenge.”