Exciting winger Jamie McIntyre believes moving to Derry City is the right move at the right time after completing a one-and-a-half year deal yesterday.
The 20-year-old admitted that he was shocked when City boss Kenny Shiels rang him after a summer cup game.
“It was a surprise, as I was playing a summer cup match in Limavady, then after the game Kenny rang me and asked to meet me in Starbucks,” he stated.
“It was a big surprise but I was absolutely buzzing with the phone call. The minute I spoke to Kenny it was such an easy decision for me. He’s just a great manager and such a great fella - it was an offer I couldn’t turn down.”
The former Institute man, who was bitterly disappointed that the Drumahoe men failed for a second time to gain promotion, admitted he was mulling over a few offers with Danske Bank Premership side Ballinmallard in pole position for his signature before Kenny stepped in.
“I was really disappointed after the promotion playoff loss for ’Stute and I was looking for a move and I feel Derry is the right move for myself to progress.
I was really disappointed after the promotion playoff loss for ’Stute and I was looking for a move and I feel Derry is the right move for myself to progress.Jamie McIntyre
“I’ll be playing at a different level and that’s what I want. It’s a far better standard of football and that’s no disrepect to ’Stute.”
McIntyre can’t wait to get started and knows the ‘Candy Stripes’ still have a lot to play for in the second half of the season.
“It’s such an exciting time to be signing for Derry, with the Europa League, FAI Cup and the second half of the league season to play.” he added.
“I’m a wee bit nervous coming into it but I’m sure I’ll be fine. Derry have had a lot of ups and downs this season, but I’m glad to be part of the squad.
“I know a lot of the younger players in the Derry squad and that has made it far easier for me to settle in.”
He hopes to force his way into Shiels’ plans sooner rather than later.
“I can bring a lot of attacking play, that’s my main threat; getting at players, putting crosses into the box and scoring goals. It might take me a while to get used to it all, but I’m confident I can make the step up.”
While Shiels feels that duo Eoin Toal and McIntyre have tremendous potential, while centre-back Darren Cole has all the attributes he is looking for in a defender.
“Eoin has got tremendous potential, he has 70 odd Irish League Championship games behind him and he has a bright future,” admitted Shiels.
“Jamie will bring something different to us, he has a change of gear; he’s very quick and although lightly made up, he has got so much potential and hopefully we can bring the best out of him.
“Darren is a good player, he has all the attributes and is ready made.
“He’s got pace, his distribution is good, he’s good in the air, he can play full-back and centre-back and he reads the game very well, so he has all the qualities that we are looking for.
“It’s just a pity that they can’t play until July, but that gives them a chance to settle in, as they help us on our quest to sustaining a European position.”
The City boss also confirmed that he might make further additions to his squad during next month’s transfer window.
“I don’t know, but if something becomes available then we’ll look at it, but if it doesn’t then we’ll move with what we have.”