Derry City won't be held to ransom in transfer market insists Ruaidhri Higgins

RUAIDHRI Higgins insists Derry City will not be held to ransom and claims the club has already pulled out of a potential deal for a player whose valuation was deemed too high.

Derry City chairman, Mr Philip O'Doherty has put on record his willingness to back Higgins once more in the transfer market but Higgins has warned potential suitors that he must be 'completely convinced' he's getting value for money before loosening the purse-strings.

Dundalk boss Stephen O'Donnell recently described Derry City as a 'heavyweight' of the League of Ireland in terms of having the financial resources to attract and keep the league's top players and offer long term deals.

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However, Higgins insists the club's transfer strategy hasn't changed and he's not prepared to make 'knee-jerk' or 'reckless' moves for players.

Derry City boss Ruaidhri Higgins.

"It's funny when you listen to that," he said. "Believe me when I tell you that clubs are spending money in this league. Clubs are spending and I know what clubs are spending, everybody knows within the League of Ireland circle.

"There are clubs that go under the radar that aren't afraid to spend and the fact we have a very wealthy owner probably highlights it a bit but having money and signing well are two different things.

"It's important when we bring players and convince Philip it's the right thing, he backs me to get it done but it's not knee-jerk, it's not reckless, it's not stupid amounts of money.

"There's a value on every player and we've pulled out of deals for players when it's got a bit too much and they've gone to other League of Ireland clubs. Unless we feel we're getting value for money then we won't do it.

Jordan McEneff became Ruaidhri Higgins' first signing of the close season. Photo courtesy of Kevin Morrison.

"That has happened and we've pulled out because this is a special club. You have to buy into what we're trying to do here and if you don't then go somewhere else."

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Higgins can do business in the close season from a position of strength having secured the vast majority of last year's squad on long term deals.

It's a welcome change of approach as the Limavady man believes the situation has allowed him to be more patient in his pursuit of the right players.

"We've identified a few targets and we're working away in the background to try and pull those off. It's definitely a different position than we were in last year where we needed people in the door and quickly.

"To be honest you look at the top clubs, Rovers, Dundalk, Pats, all those clubs, they have their best players under contract so we have to think outside the box and try and pluck a gem or two to try and enhance the group.

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"We can afford to be patient and make sure we don't dive into something we're not completely convinced about. And to be honest I think that's been the way since I've been here. Unless we're convinced we don't do it. That's the way we view it.

"We have targets in mind and you'll be first to know when they have a scarf above their head."

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