DERRY CITY pair Aidy Delap and Shane McNamee have both signed three year deals to remain at the club.
The duo, who have come through the club’s hugely successful youth policy, have featured a number of times with the first team this season and they have netted during City’s FAI Cup run.
Midfielder McNamee, who’s big brothers Tony and Barry both also played for the Candy Stripes, scored two in their win at Blarney United in the first round, while winger Delap came off the bench to score the all important winner against St Patrick’s Athletic in the previous round.
For Delap, who won 2017/18 Ulster Senior League Player of the Year, he admits he wants to finish the season strongly and knows 2019 is a big year for him and has praised boss Kenny Shiels for believing in him.
“To be honest it has been a difficult season probably more mentally to try and stick with it, but Kenny (Shiels) has given me a lot of belief these last few weeks, that I can push on over these next year or two and we’ll see where we go from there, hopefully I get a starting place and then kick-on,” he said.
“Next season is the big one for me and if I get a starting place at the start of next year onwards, you would be flying and I would be happy as Larry to be honest, because you want to try and prove yourself at a high level and the League of Ireland is a good level to prove yourself at.”
The pacy winger knows that the next few weeks in particular is massive for the club.
“We have the EA Sports Cup Final next week and then we have the quarter-finals of the FAI Cup, so it’s exciting times for the squad, maybe reaching a Europa League place through the league is a bit far, but we’ll still give it a go for the remainder of the season and see what happens,” he added.
“The team wants to finish the season strongly and for the club, because the supporters here are crazy about their football and they want to see the team do as well as possible, so we have to give them something back.
“It’s a big commitment signing a three year deal, but I’m extremely happy to get started and hopefully to push on and get a place in the starting line-up soon enough.”
The 19-year-old joins a long list of players, particularly this season who has featured in the first team having come through the youth set-up, under the guidance of John Quigg and Eddie Seydak.
“I don’t know how many years I have been here now at the club, it must be at least two or three years and Quiggy and Seydak especially have been good to me and they have given me a lot confidence since I came to the club,” he added.
“They told me to just go and play my own game and try to win matches for the team, which is what you want to be doing.”