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Barnsley: Flitcroft runs the rule over Irish duo

Former Brighton midfielder Gary Dicker, right, is on trial at Barnsley.

Former Brighton midfielder Gary Dicker, right, is on trial at Barnsley.

An Irish invasion is developing at Barnsley.

Trialists Gary Dicker and Paddy McCourt have so far impressed Reds boss David Flitcroft.

And the Irish duo - who both herald from different sides of the north and south border respectively - could earn themselves permanent deals to stay at Oakwell.

Midfielder Dicker was released by his former club Brighton in May, while winger McCourt saw his last contract at Celtic expire at the end of last sesaon.

“Gary’s certainly different to what we’ve already got in the midfield area - he’s a quality player,” revealed Flitcroft. “He’s been taught well at Stockport and then under Gus Poyet at Brighton for a few years, so hopefully we can add him to the squad.”

And on McCourt, Flitcroft added: “Paddy is a quick, talented player, and he’s also someone we’ve been talking to.

“He really tried to tear it up at Celtic and started there well, but unfortunately it only happened in spasms for him.

“He could definitely become a different kind of tool in out tool-bag.”

Dublin-born Dicker played over 100 times for the Seagulls between 2009-2013, but the club chose not to offer him a new contract this season - and the 27-year-old has been looking for a new club ever since. Meanwhile, McCourt had a brief trial with Hibernian before being handed the chance to impress in South Yorkshire.

The 29-year-old is a former Professional Football Association of Ireland Players’ Player of the Year and spent five years at Celtic between 2008-2013.

He has also played for Shamrock Rovers and Derry, but it now understood to be keen to challenge himself in the Championship.

The Reds return to action on Saturday away to Blackburn Rovers with centre-back Martin Cranie missing with a knee injury, while midfielder David Perkins is nursing a dead leg suffered in last weekend’s 2-2 draw with Charlton Athletic at Oakwell.

 

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