VIDEO: 'The Derry public will love watching David Parkhouse play': Declan Devine
DECLAN Devine believes the Derry public will 'love watching David Parkhouse play' after signing the teenage Sheffield United striker on a six month loan deal.
The nephew of former Derry City and Institute striker, Stephen Parkhouse, the Northern Ireland U21 international is hoping to make a big impact in his short spell at the club and Candy Stripes boss, Devine is confident he will be prove a 'tremendous asset' to the Brandywell club.
"David is a quality player," said Devine. "He's a player I've known a long time and a player who has matured. He's a specimen in terms of his size and he's aggressive but ultimately he's a very good footballer too.
"He's a willing runner and works extremely hard but he's a good footballer and scores goals. He's scored goals at every level he's been at. Again, his appetite to come and play for Derry was fantastic.
"He's a boy I want people to get behind. He's only 19 years of age and isn't yet an established senior player but I can guarantee the Derry public will like watching David Parkhouse play," he predicted.
"He's from good stock too. Obviously his uncle played here and he's from a good family but more importantly he's a good player. The Derry public will like what they see. He leaves nothing behind and puts his heart into everything, He'll certainly be a tremendous asset to us."
Parkhouse was delighted to secure a loan move and believes Derry City will offer him the best possible opportunity to take his career onto the next level - a challenge he's ready to embrace.
Having enjoyed short loan spells in the English National League with Boston United and Tamworth FC, the Strabane native believes he's got the physicality, aggression and mentality to make an impact with Derry in the League of Ireland.
"I've had senior football experience over in England but this is another step up and this is the equivalent to good league clubs over in England," he said. "Physically, I'm ready for the challenge. I just try to make myself better all the time and I feel like I'm at the stage now where I'm ready for this now and then I'll take the next challenge whenever that comes up.
"The plus side of it is, for me, I'm already halfway through the season already. I came back and was told to take a rest. I've been out training a bit but I'm enjoying a bit of a break now because it's going to be another tough six months ahead."
Once Declan Devine made contact about the possibility of a move to Brandywell, Parkhouse said he found it too good a chance to turn down as he bought into the plans the Derry boss has for the season ahead.
"I'm delighted for the loan to go through and get the move to Derry for first team football and get cracking. I've known Decky since I was younger at the IFA, I have been around him there.
"Whenever he rang me and I had a conversation with him and it was hard to say no to him. Everything he is doing is music to my ears and I'm just really looking forward to getting going and seeing how it pans out."
The move from U23 football in England to the League of Ireland certainly didn't do former Candy Stripe, Ronan Hale any harm as he got bags of senior football experience during his loan spell from Birmingham City last season. Making his European debut in the Europa League and winning his first senior trophy when lifting the EA Sports Cup during that time. And Parkhouse wants to make a similar impact with the Foylesiders.
The two other lads (Patrick McClean and Ciaron Harkin) have both won something already and got first team experience, now this is my chance to win something and gain the experience that they have if not more."
Following in the footsteps of his uncle who spent a season at the Brandywell under Stephen Kenny, David explains the former striker was influential in his decision to join the club.
In fact the ex-Institute and Glentoran hitman has played a key role in his development as a player.
"He's had a big influence in my life in terms of football and he has had a big part to play in every decision I've made. I'm lucky to have him, someone of his experience - not many people have that."
He's also been in and around the Northern Ireland underage set-up for quite some time and he won't find it difficult to bed into his new surroundings or build relationships with his new teammates given he's played regularly with Conor McDermott and Jamie McDonagh in the N. Ireland U21s.
"I know some of the boys at Derry and some of the internationals as well so it's a great bunch of lads and I can't wait to get going."
The young Blades hitman is highly regarded at Sheffield United with the Yorkshire club beating the likes of Celtic and Birmingham City to sign him at the age of 15 while he was reportedly being tracked by Manchester United before securing a new deal which keeps him at Bramall Lane until the end of the 2020 campaign.
He has been a prolific goalscorer for the Bramall Lane club's U18 and U23 sides in the last couple of seasons and has been named on the bench for the Carabao Cup first round tie against Hull earlier this season.
The 19-year-old is seen as one of the best talents to emerge at Sheffield United in recent years, however, Parkhouse is unlikely to break into the first-team picture anytime soon, with the club challenging for promotion to the Premier League.
And so he's hoping to make the most of his time at Derry City and get valuable first-team experience under his belt before returning to Bramall Lane in the summer.