City manager Declan Devine is delighted to reveal that Jamie McDonagh, Nathan Gartside, Eoin Toal, Darren Cole and Mark McChrystal are returning for the 2020 season in red and white.
Devine spoke to derrycityfc.net about the contract renewals, listen below.
Mark McChrystal returned to the club in 2019 from Crusaders for a third spell and whilst his game time was limited in the 2019 season, provides vital experience and cover across a range of positions in the back line. The defender has become involved in coaching, with a role assisting with the U19 squad at the club.
Nathan Gartside joined the club under Kenny Shiels and has had to be patient for his opportunity, featuring in EA Sports Cup action. The youngster’s development has not gone unnoticed though, with a call up to the Northern Ireland U-21 set up in November when he was the man of the match for the game against Romania.
Darren Cole is another who returns for a new campaign. Signed in 2017, he made a name for himself with a late winner in the North West derby away to Finn Harps in his opening season. He became a central figure in the defence the following year. 2019 saw him play most of his football at right back, before an injury saw him miss the final third of the season. With his rehab well underway, he will look to hit the ground running for next season.
Eoin Toal established himself as the first choice centre half and he anchored a Derry side that conceded just 34 goals in 36 league games last season. The youngster, who joined from Armagh City in 2017 will enter his third year with the club. Still only 20, the player has become a regular in the Northern Ireland U-21 set up and was selected as captain for the game against Romania.
Jamie McDonagh has also elected to extend his stay at Brandywell, after significant interest from clubs on both sides of the border. The player has operated at right back and further up the right wing throughout the season, chipping in with vital assists and goals, popping up to score 4 times in the League in 2019.