Derry City’s Ronan Boyce has extended his contract at the club.
The 20 year old who celebrates his birthday this week has committed to the Brandywell club for the next three and a half years, becoming Ruaidhri Higgins first signing since he took over as manager a number of weeks ago.
The Ramelton man had just penned his first professional deal in January this year.
After a substitute appearance against St Pats earlier in the season, Boyce has started all seven matches since.
Manager Higgins was full of praise for the youngster today after he put pen to paper and said he was delighted that the player had taken his chance.
He told the club website, “He has been brilliant since I came in the door and indeed in the couple of games before that as well. This is something I wanted to do as soon as possible and I’m delighted we’ve come to a long-term agreement with Ronan.”
“A lot of credit goes to Paddy and the Academy staff and all those past and present who have worked with him.”
“He’s a dream to work with and sometimes you could give a young player a long-term contract and they could rest on their laurels a bit but that won’t be the case with Ronan- he just doesn’t have that in his make-up,”
“This will only make him stronger and give him a platform to develop.”
Club Chairman Philip O’Doherty said the lengthy contract was in line with the Board’s vision for Derry City.
“We’ve said from the outset that we want to invest in the development of our own talent as well as look to attract quality players to the club.”
“Ronan can have a very bright future ahead of him and we are really looking forward to seeing him progress over the next few seasons.”
Boyce himself said he was “buzzing” with the deal and acknowledged the club’s faith in him.
“I’m delighted to sign long term with the club and I want to repay their faith in me. I’ve felt good so far but I know as well that I have to get better.”
“It’s up to me to kick on now. I have plenty of very good players around me and I’m learning from them every day. Ruaidhri has set very high standards since he came in and that’s what we have to aim for. We want to be trying to win things at Derry City but we are aware there is a lot of hard work ahead.”