Former Coventry City goalkeeper (and CCFPA member) Chris Kirkland has signed for Bury. Chris began at the Sky Blues’ Academy in 1997, making his first team professional debutin September 1999. He eventually made 29 appearances for the first team before then CCFC Chairman Bryan Richardson sold the promising youngster to Liverpool for £6.25m in 2001. Injury has hampered the development of his career but he did win an England cap in 2006.
Leaving Anfield for Wigan in 2006 (after a loan spell there and with WBA) Chris had further loan spells at Leicester City and Doncaster Rovers before transferring to Sheffield Wednesday where he clocked up 85 appearances between 2012-15. He spent last season with Preston North End and was rumoured to be being lined up for a return to Coventry at one stage. Chris has now joined Bury on a one year deal and joins a cluster of players at Gigg Lane who have worn the Sky Blue including Nathan Cameron, Leon Clarke, Peter Clarke and Danny Pugh .
Meanwhile, Notts County have signed up two former Sky Blues loanee defenders. Both Richard Duffy and Carl Dickinson have joined up with the Magpies in the last few days. Richard who had four loan spells from Portsmouth with CCFC between 2005-09 clocked up 64 appearances for the Sky Blues in total whilst Carl made just seven appearances for CCFC in 2012-13 as an emergency loanee for Mark Robins’ Sky Blues.
Carl has now joined the League Two club on a two year deal after rejecting a new deal with Port Vale. He told the Nottingham club’s website: “I’m really looking forward to it and can’t wait to get going. I’m a leader, I like to be loud in the dressing room and get the lads going. I’m going to show people I’m a good defender – I don’t mind dishing it out a little bit, I’m hard working, wear my heart on my sleeve and give everything, day in, day out.”
Also ex CCFC midfielder Conor Thomas we hear is training with Swindon Town hoping to win a contract with the Robins. Conor came through City’s academy to make 117 appearances for the Sky Blues but injuries and loss of form meant that he was not offered a new deal by the Sky Blues and released at the end of last season. Good luck to all the Sky Blues old boys as thet face their new football challenges!