Former Sky Blues midfielder Colin Healy – now manager of Cork City – has wished ‘Coventry City bound’ winger Ricardo Dinanga all the best ahead of his move to England.
The 19-year-old Irish prospect has been on trial with City’s development squad and has turned down the opportunity to renew his contract with his parent club Cork.
Dinanga impressed in the first team squad last season, scoring against both Longford Town and Sligo Rovers, but he turned down a contract with the Rebel Army for 2021 as he looks to continue his career with the Sky Blues.
That deal is expected to become permanent, reports the Cork-based EchoLive.ie – though Coventry are currently under a transfer embargo – and Healy hopes that the former Ballincollig and Corinthian Boys player can make the most of his chance.
“Ricardo’s a good lad,” said the 41-year-old who played 17 league games and scored two goals for Coventry during a Championship loan spell from Celtic in the 2002-03 season.
Fans may recall he went on to sign for Sunderland but broke his leg in a challenge with City’s Moroccan star Youssef Safri the following season.
“We had him in the academy and he was here last year and he decided to go down a different pathway.
“It probably comes down to him, how he trains and how much he wants it.
“I know that going over to England will be a whole new ballgame for him, away from home probably for the first time.
“He’s a good lad and wish him the best of luck, if that does happen.”
Having spent much of his playing career in Britain, including a loan spell at Coventry while with Celtic, Healy is well aware of how difficult it can be to make a living from professional football.
“You do need a bit of luck, to be honest,” he said.
“It’s your attitude and your application, the way you train and look after yourself, what you do away from football.
“Sometimes, you go into training and you only train for an hour and a half, it’s what you do in the afternoons and what you do at night-time. You have to be the ultimate professional to get to the highest level and it’s tough over there.
“He’s a good lad, he’s got a good attitude and, if it is the case that he does go to Coventry, we wish him well.”