Colin Doyle may not be entirely cutting his ties with Birmingham City after a campaign was last night launched to grant the departing Cork-born goalkeeper a testimonial.
At the end of 13 years at St Andrew’s since joining from Douglas Hall, confirmation of the 29-year-old’s exit on a free transfer was met with an outpouring of affection by the Blues fanbase.
Most of Doyle’s tenure was spent acting as understudy to various stoppers, including England goalkeepers Joe Hart, Ben Foster and Jack Butland, but he’ll be remembered fondly for the crucial part he contributed to their promotion to the Premier League in 2007.
“After 13 years at Birmingham City, I have come to the end of my time at the club.” said Doyle, whose sole senior Ireland cap was earned in 2007.
“I leave as part of a family and will always have the club in my heart. I wish them every success and will be forever grateful for the support you have showed me and my family while here.”
In recent years, much of Doyle’s time has been devoted to caring for son Liam, who has suffered with the after-effects of a meningitis scare as a baby.
Fundraising drives to help families in the same situation are ongoing, helped by the €12,000 generated at Sunday’s club Player of the Year awards.
His manager Gary Rowett has pledged to boost the charity and there may be a testimonial match arranged for the cause too.
“I have said to Colin that if he can get me a London Marathon place, I would like to run it next year for his boy,” Rowett revealed. “Colin is probably one of the most difficult ones to release because of his scenario.”
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