Cork City striker will return to the club as a centre-back

Cork City striker will return to the club as a centre-back
Graham Cummins of Cork City celebrates after scoring against Waterford. Picture: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

GRAHAM Cummins is set to re-sign for Cork City – but this time as a centre-back.

Thirty-two-year-old Cummins, scorer of one of the most fondly remembered goals of City’s Foras-owned era, the winner in the first-division title decider against Shelbourne in 2011, has operated as a striker for much of his career but, having signed for Waterford at the beginning of the current season, was used in defence by former Blues boss Alan Reynolds.

Cummins played at centre-back as City lost 1-0 to Wexford in a behind-closed-doors friendly at Bishopstown on Saturday. While Joseph Olowu’s loan stay with City from Arsenal has been extended, Joe Redmond has returned to Birmingham City and City manager Neale Fenn is keen to add another centre-half to join Alan Bennett, Robert Slevin and Olowu.

Having joined Preston North End immediately after helping City secure promotion in 2011, Cummins also played for Rochdale (loan), Exeter City and St Johnstone before John Caulfield brought him back to the Rebel Army in 2018.

While he scored 17 goals in all competitions as City finished second in the league and lost the FAI Cup final, he fell out of favour in 2019, though he was the club’s top scorer at the time of his loan departure to Shamrock Rovers in a swap deal with Joel Coustrain.

With the Hoops, he won an FAI Cup medal as they beat Dundalk in the decider and, on the expiry of his loan deal and City contract, he moved to Suirside but is now expected to be back in City colours.

Also involved in Saturday’s friendly was former Hibernian, Ross County, Dundalk, Bohemians, St Patrick’s Athletic and Linfield striker Kurtis Byrne. Most recently with Welsh side The New Saints, Byrne’s acquisition is being considered by Fenn but a decision has yet to be made.

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