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Udinese confirm signing of Ireland wing-back Festy Ebosele

Udinese have confirmed that Festy Ebosele will join the club from Derby County in the summer.  T...

Udinese have confirmed that Festy Ebosele will join the club from Derby County in the summer. 

The Republic of Ireland U21 international is out of contract at Pride Park at the end of this season, and will move to Serie A on a free transfer.

Ebosele has signed a five-year deal with Udinese.

He won't be the only Irishman in Udine next season, with the Bianconeri having secured the signing of St. Patrick's Athletic defender James Abankwah.

19-year old Ebosele only made his league debut for Derby towards the end of last season, making three substitute appearances as the Rams narrowly avoided relegation to League One.

Under Wayne Rooney, the Wexford man has established himself as a key player for Derby, making 32 appearances so far this season - scoring twice.

Despite his rapid rise, Ebosele was not included in Stephen Kenny's senior for the upcoming friendlies with Belgium and Lithuania. Instead, he's among Jim Crawford's U21 panel for this month's European Championship qualifier with Sweden.

While impressed with Ebosele's development, Kenny was lukewarm when the prospect of a move to Udinese was put to him recently.

"I think he would be an asset for any team, but I would have been happy for him to stay at Derby and develop," said the Ireland manager.

“Wayne Rooney has done a terrific job there to develop those players, and numerous others. I think he has done a remarkable job at Derby to put them in any contention to stay up. The kicks in the teeth they have had to deal with, and losing players every week.

“I’d have been happy for Festy to stay there, but I’m not against the fact that he’s going to Italy.

"If he’s going to play regularly, great. I think the key thing for him is to be able to play."

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Derby Derby County Festy Ebosele Ireland James Abankwah Republic Of Ireland Udinese Wayne Rooney