Tommie Hoban becomes the third Irishman to join Aberdeen this summer

Tommie Hoban becomes the third Irishman to join Aberdeen this summer

Tommie Hoban has declared himself fit and ready to make his Aberdeen debut against Burnley in the Europa League after joining on loan from Watford.

The versatile defender has signed a season-long deal as he looks to rebuild his career following a cruciate ligament injury 12 months ago.

The former Republic of Ireland Under-21 international has made more than 50 first-team appearances for Watford after being handed his debut by Malky Mackay aged 16, and had an injury-hampered loan spell at Blackburn two seasons ago.

He's the third Irish acquisition at Pittodrie this summer following the arrivals of Chris Forrester and Stephen Gleeson and he is determined to seize his chance after being signed in time to feature in the first leg of the second qualifying round on Thursday.

The 24-year-old told Red TV: "Things move very fast in football. I am just delighted to be somewhere where I feel like I am wanted and valued. I am looking forward to the game and can't wait to get cracking.

"I have been thrown straight back in after injuries in the past so it's something I am ready for. It's the kind of big game you live for as a footballer."

Hoban described himself as an "out-and-out defender" and added: "I've been at Watford since I was 14, I came from the academy and the club have been very good to me.

"Things started very well, I played quite a lot of games when I was young. The last three years have been difficult with injuries. I have had a bit of bad luck.

"But I am over that now, I'm feeling fit and I'm hoping to kick-start my career. A big club like Aberdeen is the perfect place to do that."

Manager Derek McInnes was eager to push the deal through as centre-back Mark Reynolds faces a lengthy spell out following knee surgery on Wednesday afternoon.

"We are very confident he will do very well," McInnes said. "Having got to know Tommie over the last 10 days or so and the conversations I have had with him, I know how eager he is to be here. He can play anywhere in the back four and gives us real competition, assurance and size at centre-back."

Hoban was joined at Pittodrie by former Hamilton and Partick Thistle goalkeeper Tomas Cerny, who will provide cover for Joe Lewis after young back-up David Craddock suffered an injury.

McInnes, who can register two new players in his Europa League squad before the 11pm deadline on Wednesday, is still looking to sign a striker and has delayed a decision on trialist Krystian Nowak.

The former Hearts player has been invited to face Arbroath in a friendly on Sunday after two previous trial games were postponed or abandoned.

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