James McClean hopes to finish career at Derry City

Goal.com
The 27-year-old says that he would like to close out his playing career at his hometown club in the League of Ireland

James McClean hopes to finish career at Derry City

The 27-year-old says that he would like to close out his playing career at his hometown club in the League of Ireland

West Bromwich Albion midfielder James McClean has reiterated his desire to finish his career in the League of Ireland at Derry City and perhaps one day manage the club.

The Republic of Ireland international burst onto the scene at Derry City in 2008 before earning a move to the Premier League with Sunderland three years later in 2011 and he has retained strong links with the club ever since, even occasionally training with the club during his time off.

Horgan joins McGregor on Sports Person of the Year shortlist

And, while he does not see eye to eye with current manager Kenny Shiels, the 27-year-old insists that he would like to conclude his playing career at the Brandywell.

"I'll not be [training with the club] any more because I'm not a fan of Kenny Shiels, if I'm being honest, but I'm a Derry boy at heart and I always will be whether I like the manager or not," McClean said in an interview with RTE. "Hopefully one day - Kenny Shiels will be long gone by then - I will end my career at Derry. That's where I started and that's where I want to end.

"It's a club that holds a special place in my heart. I said the day that I left Derry City to join Sunderland and I still maintain it now: that's where I want to finish my career, if they'll have me."

McClean revealed that he intends to do coaching badges next summer, but, while he says that he would jump at the chance to manage his hometown club, his focus remains on scaling "new heights" as a player.

Irish Abroad: Walters and Brady shine

The former Wigan Athletic winger added: "I'm going to do my coaching badges early because it's something I'm passionate about.

"To manage your hometown club... of course. I'd be a liar if I said it was something that wouldn't entertain me. It's something that I would dream of doing and if that opportunity arises I'll take it with open hands.

"But I'm only 27, let's not talk about management just yet. I want to reach new heights in my playing career first before I get into any coaching or management."

What to Read Next