Derry City hitman Jamie McGonigle strikes up dream partnership with Coleraine's Eoin Bradley

DERRY City striker Jamie McGonigle has teamed up with Coleraine frontman Eoin 'Skinner' Bradley to form a unique strike partnership he hopes will help him hit the top of the goalscoring charts.

By Simon Collins
Thursday, 7th April 2022, 1:20 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th April 2022, 1:22 pm
Double goal scorers Jamie McGonigle (left) and Eoin Bradley celebrate after a 4-0 victory over Ballymena United in the Irish Cup quarter final back in 2017.
Double goal scorers Jamie McGonigle (left) and Eoin Bradley celebrate after a 4-0 victory over Ballymena United in the Irish Cup quarter final back in 2017.

Former Oak Leaf forward Bradley reached out to the Dungiven man and offered to sponsor his slick new football boots in the hope the City striker can give his business a boost.

A plasterer by trade, the former Derry star has set up his own business, EB Plastering, and felt his good friend McGonigle was the perfect poster boy given his prolific scoring record for the Candy Stripes.

McGonigle kicked off the season with four goals for City, including a stoppage time winner against Shamrock Rovers and a brace against Drogheda United and 'Skinner' hopes the new boots can inspire another scoring spree.

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"I've known Jamie for the past 15 years or whatever," explained the Glenullin man. "I'm good friends with him. I'm out on my own now doing a bit of plastering and thought it would be a good way to get a wee bit of publicity for starting up.

"So I said to Jamie I'd sponsor his boots. He's scoring a lot of goals and playing well up there in Derry and that's how it came about. I've always had my boots sponsored at Coleraine which is a good wee gesture and hopefully Jamie can score plenty of goals with them."

McGonigle's stylish new white Nike boots certainly catch the eye but they're not necessarily to Skinner's own taste with the Bannsiders' striker insisting he had no input into the chosen design!

Indeed, he suggested he would be thrown out of the dressing room if he turned up to a GAA match in Glenullin wearing a similar pair.

Jamie McGonigle celebrates his dramatic stoppage time winner against Shamrock Rovers. Photograph by Kevin Moore.

"He picked them, they wouldn't be my cup of tea but sure whatever keeps him happy," he laughed. "If I turned up wearing them up around Glenullin I'd be put out of the changing rooms."

Bradley, who switched codes to join Coleraine for his first spell in 2013, hasn't a bad goalscoring record himself. He's currently on 54 goals in 217 appearances for the Bannsiders and netted 40 times in 91 games for Glenavon.

He knows all about hitting the back of the net and is confident McGonigle will continue to rack up the numbers in front of goal for the Candy Stripes.

"I've watched a few of his games and he's doing well. He's bulked up a lot and looks physically a lot stronger which is the full-time aspect. Hopefully he continues to go so well."

That physicality has certainly added to McGonigle's game this season and Bradley believes the Dungiven man's GAA background has served him well in that regard.

"It definitely does. It won't do you any harm anyway. The thing with Jamie, he's always had raw talent and speed but now he's at the gym and has bulked up a lot and that will stand him in good stead for the next three or four seasons he has with Derry City.

"He's like any good striker, he doesn't like passing," he laughed. "That's the main thing, scoring goals."

McGonigle, who will be hoping to test out his new shooting boots at Finn Park in Saturday's North West derby, was delighted to be sponsored by his former Coleraine teammate and hopes they bring him good fortune.

"Basically 'Skinner' just text me to say how well I've been doing and offered to sponsor my boots," he said. "We're good friends and still chat and get on well. I'm delighted he made the offer and very appreciative. Hopefully I can score plenty of goals with them over the rest of the season, maybe they'll bring me a bit of luck."

'Skinner' will be hoping to line up against Larne tomorrow in the end of season European play-offs and he's hoping to end a disappointing season on a high note.

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