First Zinedine Kilbane, now another Irish left back is on the move
Greg Cunningham, one of the brightest prospects in Irish football, has dropped down a division in an attempt to establish himself and signed with Championship side Bristol City.
Cunningham becomes the second Irish left back to move onto pastures new today, following Kevin Kilbane’s switch to Coventry City, but while the Vanilla Ice wannabe’s career is winding down at this stage, Irish fans will be hoping that Cunningham’s move to Bristol City can reignite a career that showed such promise in the early stages.
Cunningham, still only 21, joined Manchester City as a 16-year old and made his first team debut for the current Premier League Champions against Scunthorpe in the FA Cup in 2010.
He made four first team appearances for Citeh before heading on loan to Leicester in the 2010-2011 season, where after some promising displays for the Foxes, he broke his leg playing against Hull City on New Year’s Day last year.
Cunningham returned to Manchester before once again going on loan to Nottingham Forest last season, where he showed once again that he is well able to cut it at Championship level.
Realising that first team opportunities would be few and far between with a team who have just won the league and to whom money is no object, Cunningham decided to leave Roberto Mancini’s side and shack up with a side that finished 20th in the second tier last season. Cunningham has signed a four year contract with Derek McInnes' side and no fee for the transfer has been disclosed.
"I've been with City since I moved over here so it was always going to be a big decision," Cunningham told BBC Radio Bristol.
"But I felt to better my career and better myself as a player I had to leave Man City, and I think Bristol City is the right club for me.
"[Bristol City manager] Derek [McInnes] is a very ambitious and driven manager and I'm very much looking forward to working under him."
The Galway native made his full Irish debut against Algeria in 2010 and has made three appearances for Giovanni Trapattoni’s side.
If everything goes according to plan at Bristol, Cunningham will hopefully get the chance to add to that haul in the near future as after Kilbane’s departure from the international scene, we’re not exactly flooded with talent in the left back position.
We would tell Greg to break a leg but that would be insensitive given his past record with injuries, so we'll just wish him all the best at his new club.