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BREAKING: Devlin joins the Saddlers

26 June 2017

Walsall FC can today confirm the signing of Scottish right-back Nicky Devlin on a two-year deal from Ayr United, subject to international clearance.

The 23-year-old defender made over 100 appearances for the Honest Men, whom he also captained.

The one-time Scotland U21 international becomes our fourth summer signing, following the arrivals of left-back Luke Leahy, centre-half Jon Guthrie and goalkeeper Mark Gillespie.

“I’m really pleased to be getting Nicky on board," said manager Jon Whitney. "I’m excited to see how he fits into the group here at the club over the next few weeks in pre season.

“He’ll be an important player for the squad. He ticks all the boxes and fits into our philosophy here at the club.

"He was the youngest captain at Ayr United and comes across as a very driven player. He’s been a key player for them, and earned his way into team of the season.

“Nicky is someone that we have been aware of for a while now, we’ve been keeping tabs on him from the end of last season, where we went to watch him in a couple of games.

“He’s someone who we feel can step up and kick on at this level. He comes in at the right age where we can improve him as a player.

“There were lots of other clubs interested in Nicky, but we sold the club to him, we sold the philosophy, the fan base and the fact that we are a community club.

"It’s important that we make these players feel welcome and we ensure their families feel part of the set up here as well.”

The former Dumbarton and Motherwell man says he is ready for the challenge ahead.

“I’m very excited to be here at the club," said Devlin. "I’ve had a long break, so I just want to get in and get started now.

“I’ve been around the stadium and had a look at the facilities and I’m really impressed with the set-up here.

“The strongest part of my game is that I like to get forward, it’s one of my main attributes. I’d class myself as quite a quick player and I’m able to burst forward from defence. But first and foremost I am a defender.

“I want to come in and make an impact straight away. I want to make sure I’m consistently in the team and proving myself as a right-back.

“I know it’s going to be different coming into the EFL, but I’m excited by that. There are some big teams that have come back and big teams that have come up so I’m excited for the challenge.

“It’s a big club. I’ve spoken to a number of people and they all speak highly of Walsall Football Club. When I knew Walsall were interested, I jumped at the opportunity to join the Saddlers."


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