Fleetwood Town's rejected bid for Ryan Graydon 'miles below' Derry City's valuation as Ruaidhri Higgins declares the matter 'closed!'
The League One outfit made an official approach for the 24 year-old last week but the club flatly refused to entertain the derisory offer and Higgins made clear the Candy Stripes have no intention of selling players on the cheap.
The City boss declared 'that's the matter closed' and claims the Foylesiders are in a 'very good position' and won't accept cut-price deals for any of his players.
"We have received an offer from Fleetwood that was miles below our valuation for the player and the work he's put in and the work we've put in to get him to where he is, it's way, way below," slammed Higgins.
As far as he's concerned, there will be no further transfer discussions about Graydon who he views as a valuable member of his team.
"It's gone in my mind. We're in a very good position in this football club and we won't be accepting any bids for any players that don't meet our valuation. So that's the matter closed for me.
"We have our playing staff in place to try and improve on last season and that's what we want to do. That's it! For me, we move on.
"We're delighted with Ryan. I think Ryan's happy here and knows how much he's improved. I still think there's more scope for improvement and we look forward to seeing that."
Higgins plucked Graydon from First Division side Longford Town on a two-and-a-half year deal for a fee in the region of €10,000 last summer and he's become an integral part of his plans. He was a central figure in Derry's FAI Cup Final victory over Shelbourne last November and has begun this season in similar fashion.
"Ryan's 6ft, really quick, direct, powerful, good in the air and adding goals and assists to his game. So he's polishing himself up and he's been brilliant.
“He's been receptive to information and has that drive to win football matches as well and is producing in big games as well. We're delighted with him and he understands where we're at as a club as well. We look forward to the rest of the season, not only with Ryan but the rest of the players and let's see what we can achieve."
Meanwhile, teenage winger Matty Ward has returned to his parent club Ipswich Town after being recalled from his loan spell with the Candy Stripes. The 19 year-old, who made his debut as a substitute in the 2-0 win over Shamrock Rovers in the President's Cup last February, has found his game-time limited. He scored his first goal for Derry in the second half of last Friday's 4-1 win over UCD as he turned in Graydon's cross at the back post.
It's understood the Tractor Boys wanted Ward to return refreshed ahead of their own pre-season campaign and cut short his loan spell. City boss Higgins wished the player the best of luck.
"He's a great young lad and I'm sure he will have a bright future in the game. We wish him all the best."