Lions Welcome Murphy & Whelan

We are delighted to announce the signings of forward Kallan Murphy and midfielder Leigh Whelan. The Irish duo are well known to Paul Phillips.

Guiseley AFC manager Paul Phillips has boosted his squad by signing two young Irishmen who played for him and assistant manager Kayde Coppin at Matlock Town, writes Rachel O’Connor.

Kallan Murphy and Leigh Whelan were both born in Wexford and they crossed the water together to join Chesterfield’s Academy two years ago, to hopefully make the grade as professional footballers in England.

Murphy, a forward, and Whelan, a midfielder, took slightly different routes with Murphy playing all his football with his local club Enniscorthy Town.

Whelan meanwhile progressed through three levels of football in Ireland playing for Cabinteely FC and moving to Dublin to play for Shelbourne in the League of Ireland.

The lads were born and raised in Wexford and Murphy, 19, said they have known each other since they were 12 years-old.

He said: “Moving to England together has been great for us. We have been able to look after each other. Chesterfield as a club have been really good to us and have really looked after us. We cannot thank them enough.”

The players, who continue to live in Chesterfield, both signed for Matlock Town last summer when they linked up with Phillips and Coppin.

Murphy said of the link: “Paul and Kayde gave me and Leigh the opportunity to play first team at Matlock so when they got in touch it was a no brainer to come and join them at Guiseley.”

Whilst at the Chesterfield Academy, where Murphy was Under-19s Player-of-the-Season, both players had spells out on loan to experience men’s football.

Murphy spent time at Mansfield outfit Clipstone FC and 20 year-old Whelan played for Sheffield FC. More recently he has been playing for Stocksbridge.

Murphy has ambitions in football to challenge himself and see what is the highest level he can play at.

“I want to be a pro footballer at the end of the day”, added the youngster.

Of the current season he said: “I want to try and get as many wins as we can at Guiseley and try to get in the play-offs.”

For his part Whelan said: “Firstly I am looking forward to playing in the Isuzu FA Trophy tie against Halifax Town. Then I want to challenge myself to see how high a level I can play. I am looking to get a decent career out of football, to be able to get a living out of the game.”

He added: “I am glad Guiseley have signed Kallan as well, it will help us settle in well if we are together.

Whilst Whelan was registered in time for tonight’s Isuzu FA Trophy fixture, Murphy is ineligible having already played for Matlock Town in the competition this season and his registration is subject to NPL approval.

Welcome to Guiseley Kallan and Leigh!

Kallan and Leigh’s home, away and training kits are all available to sponsor.

Meanwhile we can confirm that midfielder Luke Dean and goalkeeping coach Karl Lenaghan have left the club. Dean arrived in the summer and made 15 appearances for the club, both depart with our best wishes for their future careers.

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