So how have you settled in at Sligo since joining in December?
Really good. The club have set me up with a place to live and the family are down for half of the week so I’m getting my bearings. It’s a pity the manager has gone as you never like to see the man who brought you in leave but we move on.
What are your early impressions of the club?
I’ve only been here about six weeks but they’re are all positive. Everyone has been great in helping me fit in.
Were there offers from other clubs to consider before you joined Sligo?
Yeah, I had a bit of interest from a few teams in Dublin and that but once Sligo were mentioned, it was the only place I was going, to be honest.
When you joined, Paul Cook described you as “the most exciting signing” he had ever made. Did he play a big part in your move?
He had been trying to sign me for the last four seasons or so and finally it was pushed through. Paul is a lovely man and I knew Ian Foster from my time with Dundalk so it was looking pretty good. But he has left and Gerry Carr came in and did really well during his time as caretaker manager. The results in pre-season have been decent.
Have you met the new gaffer (Ian Baraclough) yet?
No, not yet. I think we’re due to meet him tomorrow.
Yourself and fellow new boy Danny North had 28 goals between you in the Premier Division last season. Can we expect a similar return this season?
Hopefully I can get my quota. Danny has been banging the goals in and Rafa Cretaro has been frightening in pre-season. I’ve haven’t scored any but that seems to normally be the case for me. I won’t score many, then once the season starts I’ll get going.
How are you feeling physically? Did you play against Longford over the weekend?
I got 90 minutes under my belt, yeah. I played in a few different positions – up front, out on the wing and as an attacking midfielder, but I feel my game is suited to being a striker. It’s been hard and you don’t really get your sharpness until you’ve played four, five or six games on the trot but I’m feeling good.
2011’s two top goalscorers, Eamon Zayed and Eoin Doyle, have left the Airtricity League along with the likes of Karl Sheppard, Graham Cummins and Richie Ryan. Have you any ambition to ever return to English football?
No, not really. I don’t think about it. My main goal is to do well on the pitch and score my fair share and if something was to happen I’d take it from there. I wouldn’t go chasing it though.
The Bit O’Red are being tipped to push current champions Shamrock Rovers close to the title again this season. Do you believe you’re genuine title challengers?
We’re looking decent. It’s a small enough squad, maybe 16 or 17 players, but we’ve got some smashing lads. I’ve come second in the league on three occasions since I came back from England so winning it would be nice.
With a number of the sides strengthening their teams, do you think it will be an even more competitive title race than last season?
It was pretty competitive last season to be fair. I don’t think Shamrock Rovers ran away with it by any means. They’re the team to beat again but it’s looking like it will be a great seasons for fans and I can’t wait to get going at Tolka Park on Friday night.
Away from football, what do you do to relax? A round of golf? Few games of FIFA ’12? A good book??
I drive back and forth on the N4, that’s what I do! No, I’m recently married and have a young family so when I get time off I like to spend as much of it as I can with them. I’m a pretty laid-back bloke.
What type of music do you have playing for these road trips from Dublin to Sligo and back?
(Pauses) I’m trying to think what I have in the car at the moment. I’ve been listening to Chris Brown recently. I’m into that type of stuff.
Interesting. Are you a man for the box sets?
Big time. All I do is record stuff on the Sky+. We’re watching the second season of Boardwalk Empire at the moment.
Nucky and Jimmy: I suppose we better not spoil the season finale’s twist on him!
Ah, yes. You can’t beat a bit of Steve Buscemi. I might be putting you on the spot here but what’s your favourite football memory? It can feature you as a player but doesn’t necessarily have to…
From a playing point of view, the goal I scored for St Pat’s against IF Elfsborg in the UEFA Cup in 2008 stands out. It was the winner and sent us through to the first round proper of the competition so that was special.
As a fan, Man United’s Champions League win in 1999 and the two late goals would be hard to forget.
YouTube credit: stpatsfccom
Finally, I have to ask… where do you get your hair done?
Ha, that’s all natural. It’s all about the good genes. A few of the lads give it some stick but that’s only because they’re jealous about losing their own!