UCD midfielder Paul Corry has completed his move to English Championship team Sheffield Wednesday for an undisclosed fee.
The 21 year old, who played 92 league games for UCD and over 100 games in total, signed a three year contract today.
Paul played the majority of his schoolboy football with Belvedere FC, and captained his team to two DDSL Premier League titles, a league cup and two FAI Cups.
He has also represented Ireland at every age group and was recently called up to the U21 squad by manager Noel King.
Paul, from Castleknock, arrived at UCD towards the end of the 2009 season and went straight into Martin Russell’s starting line up. He helped the team claim promotion from the first division.
Injuries hit his first season in the Premier Division making 22 starts, but he started every league game (36) last season. Making him the only player in the Airtricity League to do so.
He has made 17 appearances this season scoring once. A crucial last minute winner against Shelbourne two weeks ago.
Also playing for the college team he won a Colleges/Universities title, a Harding Cup and an FAI U20 National League title.”
Paul was offered contracts by Burnley and Nottingham Forest when he was 16 and 18, but decided to remain in Ireland to complete his Leaving Cert. He has just finished his Commerce Degree in UCD where he was been studying and playing on the club’s soccer scholarship programme. He has also been offered jobs by two accountancy companies following his qualification but has decided to defer those offers are her persues his football dream.
Paul said: “I’m delighted to have got the move, it’s been something I’ve been working towards for a number of years but felt my education was also important, but I’m delighted it’s happened.”
“I’ve had a great few years at UCD and made some life long friends as well as played top level football in Ireland’s Premier League.”
“I’d like to thank all the players and staff at UCD and manager Martin Russell. I will be looking out for their result every weekend and look forward to returning to The Bowl to watch a game whenever I can.”
“Our form of late has been good and I’m sure the lads can get a few more points and stay in the Premier Division which they deserve to do.”
Manager Martin Russull: “The signing of Paul Corry to Sheffield Wednesday is a significant move for all concerned. Paul leaves us having completed his studies and now can focus on making his way in the professional game with a top championship club. He has been a valuable team player since his arrival.I know he values the philosophy that the club beholds, and his move for me demonstrates that you can continue your footballing aspirations without sacrificing your education.”
“Far too many Irish players leave too early for too little .When I originally signed Paul I told him that UCD was the best option for a lad his age and I hope more like him will follow in his steps in the future.”
“He has progressed in both football and academic pathways and everyone here wishes him the best.”
“It’s not easy to lose someone of Paul’s caliber ,but it now gives others an opportunity to progress, and this has been a feature at the club for a long time. All the lads will miss Paul,but can also use his rise up the football as a source of inspiration.”
Below is the piece on Paul on the Sheffield Wednesday website
Sheffield Wednesday have signed Irish starlet Paul Corry from University College Dublin for an undisclosed fee, subject to international clearance.
The central midfielder has penned a three-year contract at Hillsborough.
Corry goes straight into Dave Jones’ first team squad and has been allocated shirt number 21.
The 21-year-old is widely regarded as an outstanding young talent in his homeland.
He played almost 100 games for UCD, scoring 14 goals from the engine room, before earning a recent call-up to the Republic of Ireland Under-21 squad for their Euro 2013 qualifier against Turkey.
At just 18-years-old, Corry was offered a contract by then Premiership newcomers Burnley but opted to stay in Ireland to further both his football development and education.
He has since been scouted by a raft of English clubs and the Owls have emerged triumphant with his signature.
Corry said: “I have bided my time for the right move at the right time and this is it for me.
“Sheffield Wednesday is a club with a huge heritage and history and the stadium just blows you away.
“I really can’t wait to get started and, like everyone else at the club, I have ambitions of playing in the Premier League.
“But it’s one step at a time, I know it will be difficult at first but once I settle in and get my sharpness, I have the confidence in my ability to do well for Sheffield Wednesday.”