EXCLUSIVE: Forest Green set to sign former Premiership star Rory Delap

2:01pm Thursday 30th January 2014

By Ashley Loveridge

FOREST Green are set to sign former Premiership star Rory Delap.

The 37-year-old former Stoke, Southampton and Derby midfielder Rory Delap announced his retirement from the game in December after playing for League Two outfit Burton Albion.

The long-throw specialist, previously coached at Stoke by Forest Green boss Ady Pennock and assistant Dave Kevan, is believed to be keen to be reunited with his former mentors.

The SNJ understands the former Republic of Ireland star trained at Rovers’ Cirencester RAC training ground today and is set to put pen-to-paper at the New Lawn on Friday.

The former Republic of Ireland international began a 19-year career at Carlisle United and went on to make more than 580 appearances for Derby, Southampton, Sunderland, Stoke, Barnsley and Burton in all competitions.

Delap only scored 35 goals, but created numerous others with his trademark long throws.

Southampton paid £4 million for him in 2001, but it was Stoke where he had his longest spell, playing 208 games in almost six years, including the 2011 FA Cup final against Manchester City, which they lost 1-0.

He joined Barnsley on loan in February, but after being released by the Potters a permanent deal with the Tykes failed to materialise in the summer and he joined the Brewers for pre-season training.

Watch long-throw specialist Rory Delap

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