Hat-trick hero Cian Kavanagh and Jordan McEneff like new signings: insists Derry City boss
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Higgins has added Colm Whelan, Tadhg Ryan and Ben Doherty to his 2023 squad but some fans have expressed fears about the club being seemingly stagnant in the close season.
For an FAI Cup winning team and league runners-up, it's fair to argue there's not too much to improve on based on last season and bearing in mind, the majority of the team are on long term deals.
This is basically the first full pre-season many will have been together. The likes of Sadou Diallo, Ryan Graydon, Kavanagh, Jordan McEneff are preparing for their first full campaign at Derry while Michael Duffy also missed much of last year after breaking his leg early in the campaign.
Higgins also believes both Kavanagh and McEneff, two players with ‘bags of talent' will be like new signings for his team going into the new campaign.
"He (Kavanagh) is a good player," said Higgins after the 6-0 pre-season win over Harps. "I look at Cian, and people would say you've only signed a couple this window, but I actually look at Cian and Jordan McEneff as two new signings.
"That's how I look at the pair of them. They are two young players with bags of talent. Cian gives us something completely different. He's got three goals today so it's a good start for him.
"He needs to keep that going and knows that if he's going to play here he can't rest. I'm delighted for him."
The 6-0 drubbing of an experimental Harps team proved an encouraging first run-out of pre-season for Higgins’ troops and he was delighted to finally get most of his squad some game-time after last Wednesday’s Billy Kee Memorial cup clash with Institute fell victim to the weather.
“It was a really good run out and it was badly needed. It's probably 10 weeks since our last game so the players were itching to get back onto the pitch. The longer pre-season goes on we'll try and get the structure of the team right but at the minute it's just about getting minutes into the legs and fitness.”