Murray: “I’m staying with the Ports”

Darren Murray celebrates at Seaview with Ross Redman and Sean Mackle. Pic by PressEye Ltd.
Darren Murray celebrates at Seaview with Ross Redman and Sean Mackle. Pic by PressEye Ltd.

Darren Murray confirmed his commitment to Portadown last night (Thursday) by opting to withdraw his transfer request.

The striker previously sent the Ports an e-mail seeking a move away from Shamrock Park and speculation over a switch to Cliftonville or Linfield has dominated the summer transfer window.

However, Murray has had a change of heart and is convinced remaining with Portadown will prove the best option to help achieve his career goals.

“I felt the transfer request was the right decision at the time but have now told the club I want to withdraw it and stay at Portadown,” said Murray. “The club have been brilliant with me and that support went a long way towards realising it would be best to stay at the Ports.

“I have more respect than ever for Ronnie McFall now due to the way he has handled everything and we have had a brilliant relationship from day one.

“Ronnie arranged a trial for me at Morton on Wednesday and I did well, scoring and setting up goals so we will just wait and see how that develops.

“I am feeling sharp thanks to my own pre-season fitness work, my training with the club and the arrival of Scott Paulin as strength-and-conditioning coach.

“Everyone is looking lean and sharp at the minute and I just want to concentrate now on scoring goals and winning honours for Portadown.

“I had a good pre-season return then got two goals on Saturday against Crusaders before the sending off.

“I have come into this season with a lot more drive and want to push on then see what that leads to in terms of full-time football.”

Murray was granted permission by the club to attend a trial in Scotland on the same night as Portadown defeated Warrenpoint Town for a second successive Danske Bank Premiership win.

“I was sitting in the airport waiting for my flight home and thinking about everything,” said Murray, who was suspended on Wednesday following a weekend red card. “I phoned my agent and told him my thinking was to stay at Portadown, he agreed and I had a good chat with Ronnie on Thursday about everything.

“Ronnie, the coaching staff and Board have been brilliant and my team-mates have been helping me keep my head on the pitch.

“I can understand the reaction of the fans at the time of the request and everyone is entitled to an opinion.

“But my job is to score goals for Portadown and I will continue to do that and help the team.”