Ronan Hale thanks Cliftonville fans 'for everything they've given me' after making move to Scottish Premiership outfit Ross County

Ronan Hale has joined Ross County from Cliftonville. PIC: Ross CountyRonan Hale has joined Ross County from Cliftonville. PIC: Ross County
Ronan Hale has joined Ross County from Cliftonville. PIC: Ross County
Ronan Hale has thanked Cliftonville fans “for everything they’ve given me” and says he’ll forever cherish memories made at the Irish League club after joining Scottish Premiership outfit Ross County on a three-year deal.

The 25-year-old scored 51 goals in 82 appearances across two years at Solitude and will be remembered for his Irish Cup final double as the Reds celebrated competition success for the first time in 45 years last season.

Hale, who has previously spent time across the water with Birmingham City, had been linked with a number of clubs in England after an array of impressive performances, but has now made the switch to Scotland after Cliftonville accepted a bid from the Dingwall-based club.

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“I’ve loved my time here and I’ve loved being a Cliftonville player but I feel like this is an opportunity I can’t turn down,” Hale told Cliftonville’s website. “I’ve got a young family, we’ve just welcomed our second child and recently got engaged, so I have to think of them and do what I feel is best for our future together.

“It’s not easy to be leaving Cliftonville, this is my boyhood Club and everybody knows what it means to me, but I’m leaving with great memories and that second goal in the Irish Cup Final will stay with me forever. To be able to score a goal like that with so many of my friends and family in the stand was special and it’s something we’ll always have.

“I want to thank the supporters for everything they’ve given me. They’ve been great since the first day I signed and we’ve had some great times together over the last couple of years, but I’m on a new journey now and it’s an opportunity I want to go and grab with both hands.

Club Chairman Kieran Harding said: “We wish Ronan every success for the future and thank him for his services at Cliftonville.

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“As much as we tried to persuade him to stay, once it became clear that Ronan had aspirations of playing at a higher level, we worked hard to negotiate the best possible deal with Ross County – one that met our valuation for a player of such quality, balanced against the current stage of his contract with us.

“We look forward to seeing Ronan play in the Scottish Premiership and I know our supporters would like to not only wish him well but also thank him for the many wonderful memories he provided.”

Ross County finished 11th in the Scottish Premiership last season and preserved their top-flight status by beating Raith Rovers in a promotion/relegation play-off.

Only St Johnstone and relegated Livingston scored fewer goals than County’s 38 – something which Hale should help address – and manager Don Cowie admits they had to fight off interest to secure the striker’s services.

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"We are delighted to sign Ronan,” he told the club’s website. “He has an exceptional goalscoring record in Ireland and had multiple clubs interested in him. We are delighted that he has chosen to join Ross County and look forward to his time in the Highlands.”

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