McGuigan signs deal with fledgling Swedish Premier Division side
By Gavin McLaughlin
FORMER Dundalk centre-back Ciaran McGuigan was last week unveiled as Swedish Premier Division outfit Syrianska FC's third signing of pre-season.
Syrianska are based in Sdertlje, a city south of Stockholm, and won promotion to the top tier of Swedish football for the first time in their history last season.
McGuigan joined Dundalk in 2009 under Sean Connor, primarily for the club's A Championship side, after enjoying spells at Glenavon and Armagh City.
He signed amateur forms following Ian Foster' and went on to make 30 appearances - the ninth highest - in all competitions for the Lilywhites first team last season, chipping in with goals against Sligo Rovers and Sporting Fingal. He also started in the club's Europa League Qualifying Round tie with Levski Sofia in Bulgaria.
A new deal was offered by Dundalk but after spending time on trial in Sweden after Christmas, he opted for a move abroad.
The 21-year-old's move to Sweden was helped in part by Welsh midfielder Richie Hurlin, who is also on Syrianska's books. Dundalk fans may remember that Hurlin had a trial with the Lilywhites in pre-season last year, playing in a friendly game against Athlone Town.
Speaking on Syrianska's website, the club's Sporting Director, Zeki Turan, expressed his delight at the defender's arrival.
"Ciaran will truly round out our squad", he said. "He has made a great impression during his audition period with us. He has good defensive skills and like most British players, he is strong and has a fantastic attitude. He will contribute a lot for us this year."
"It's a great move", said McGuigan. "I've known for a while now that I want to test myself outside the British Isles and this feels like the right step for me. I'm told the club have a strong support so it will be great to represent Syriac. I have received an extremely good impression of the club since I arrived here and hopefully I can help contribute to some great results this season, "he told the Syriac website.
McGuigan has signed a one year contract at the club with a view to a further year.