WATCH: Stevie Lowry delighted to be back at Coleraine

Coleraine's latest recruit will certainly need no introduction around The Showgrounds.

Tuesday, 15th May 2018, 7:55 pm
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 8:23 am
Coleraine boss Oran Kearney welcomes Stevie Lowry back to the club.

Stevie Lowry has returned to the Bannsiders after a four-year spell with Linfield.

But the 31-year-old said the Coleraine side he is coming back to is a 'very different animal' to the one he left.

"I have no regrets about leaving, I loved my four years at Linfield," said Lowry after penning a two-year deal at The Showgrounds.

"But I had made 170 appearances for Coleraine before that and I have a lot of great memories of my time here.

"I'm coming back to a different animal now though.

"Coleraine has made massive progress. The attendances are up, they have won a trophy, they are building things nicely here.

"I want to be part of all that, but I'm under no illusions they have a really good team and it's going to be hard to get in to.

Coleraine boss Oran Kearney welcomes Stevie Lowry back to the club.

"Hopefully I can help those players around me though, I'm looking forward to joining up with them next season.

"What they did this year in the league was amazing, but it's a fresh start next season, there's four or five top teams in the league and it won't be easy to maintain it.

"But it's up to Coleraine to set the bar and continually challenge at the top of the league.

"That's why I came here, hopefully I can help them achieve those standards regularly.

"I'm looking forward to playing in Europe for Coleraine, that will be a new thing for me.

"It's great to pull this shirt on again, I'm really excited by it."

Lowry said his decision to turn down a new deal to rejoin Coleraine was purely about football.

"It was a purely football decision for me," he said.

"Travelling is one thing but when it comes down to it it is all about the football and where I think the best place is for me to achieve success.

"I felt the way things are going here, I'm a local lad with good ties to the club, it was a no-brainer for me.

"It was hard to decide to leave Linfield because it is a great club, but I felt the time was right to come back to Coleraine and I'm looking forward to a fresh challenge.

"Obviously my contract was up at Linfield, and I had options to stay there or go to other clubs, but I wanted to be part of what's happening here at Coleraine.

"There's a good buzz about the club, Oran is building something special here and I want to be part of it. I'm really happy with my decision."

Bannsiders boss Oran Kearney is also delighted to link up again with a player he knows so well.

"It was was an absolute no-brainer of a signing for us," he said.

"We won't deny it we didn't want him to leave the club.

"I've known him for a long time. I managed him at Limavady before he joined Coleraine, I was fortunate enough to join him here, and when he left us he had developed into easily one of the best in the league.

"That's still there for me, he has always looked after himself, he no different now to what he was like at 24.

"But his football brain has developed immensely over the last ten years.

"He's right at the peak of his career, but with someone like Stevie, who looks after himself so well, he can prolong his career with consummate ease.

"I'm delighted to have him back. For as good as we were last year he gives us that wee bit of calm and something different.

"There was a few games this season when we maybe didn't put our foot on the ball or settle as quickly as we would have wanted, particularly in the last six weeks.

"Stevie will bring us experience and a standard to training and the club as a whole which will bring loads to the changing room and the players around him.

"It's the perfect fit for me. We've just finished second in the league and won the cup with that how do you better the squad?

"I don't want to sign squad players for want of a better word, I want to bring in players who will push the guys already here, and Stevie will absolutely do that.

"He has gone and won all the medals he wanted to win, but there's still a hunger and a desire, and probably a bit of unfinished business here to finish off what he started.