Greg Cunningham moves to Bristol City
Republic of Ireland international left-back Greg Cunningham has signed for Bristol City on a permanent deal from Manchester City.
Cunningham, 21, has been looking for a new club after failing to make the breakthrough at Man City, and has signed for the Robins for an undisclosed fee. The 3-time Ireland international defender is seen by many as the long-term replacement for Kevin Kilbane in the Irish defence, and the move should guarantee him more first team action.
The Galway-born player joined Manchester City as a youth in 2007 from local side Mervue United, but only made 2 Premier League appearances since turning professional in 2010. He spent time on loan at Leicester City during that season, but the switch was cut short when he picked up a tibia injry after just 13 games. Another loan move saw him play 27 league games for Nottingham Forest last season, becoming one of Steve Cotterill’s first choice players.
Bristol City boss Derek McInnes told the club’s official website that he has been watching Cunningham for a while, and is happy to have gotten his man. “The left-back position is one that we’ve needed to strengthen and fill,” McInnes said. “Greg is someone who has interested us for a long time. We scouted Nottingham Forest a number of times at the back end of last season and he really caught the eye. He’s a good player who is only going to improve. Greg is a solid defender, determined and full of energy and pace.
“We had a number of options put to us in that position but good left-backs are hard to find and Greg was always the one we wanted. I believe we have secured the services of one of the best up-and-coming left-backs. I’d like to thank (majority shareholder) Steve Lansdown for his efforts in making this deal happen, along with Keith (Dawe, chairman) and Jon (Lansdown, managing director), as well as Manchester City. It’s a great financial deal for the club and we get an excellent player out of it on a long-term, secure contract.”
Cunningham is a current member of the Irish under-21 side, but made his senior debut under Giovanni Trapattoni in May 2010 at the RDS against Algeria.