Dylan Watts and Aaron Greene sign for Shamrock Rovers

Sat, Jul 07 2018

Watts spent the first half of the season on loan with Rovers' bitter rivals Bohemians. Credit: Martin Doherty (ETPhotos)

Shamrock Rovers have announce the signing of free agents Aaron Greene and Dylan Watts after they departed Bray Wanderers and Leicester City.

Greene, 28, arrives for a second spell with the Hoops after spending a year with the Tallaght club in 2012.

Hoops boss Stephen Bradley had two bids for the striker knocked back by Bray at the same stage last season, but the Dubliner left the club by mutual consent earlier this week.

21-year-old Watts spent the first half of the season on loan with Bohemians and had been offered a deal by Dundalk before opting for Bohs' bitter rivals.

Like Greene, he brings European experience having been part of the UCD side that went two rounds in the Europa League qualifiers in 2015.

"For me, Aaron at Bray the last couple of years has been one of the best players in the league,” Bradley told the club's website.

“He's dangerous from anywhere on the pitch and he scores goals. Aaron had a lot of interest from clubs in this country. He could have went anywhere really and we're delighted that he's picked us.

“I believe he adds a massive amount of pace and power to us in the attacking third of the pitch and that's maybe something that we've been lacking.

“You have to look at what age he was and what was going on at the club during his first spell at the club.

“He's a different man now to when he was here a few years ago, he's matured and he's settled down, plus his [four-year-old] son is at the academy.

“Aaron has been around the club and knows what it's all about. He wants to be around that.”

Greene won't feature in Saturday's friendly with Celtic as he continues his recovery from a knee ligament injury, but Watts will be available for selection.

Bradley said: "Dylan obviously had a lot of interest from clubs here and away so we're delighted he's seen his future here, the next part of his career and development at this club.

“I think it's a very mature decision from someone very young.

“He could have been persuaded by things elsewhere but he's seen what's happening here and what we're doing and wants to be part of that.

“We've always liked Dylan, from the time he went from UCD and when he came back. He can do everything in midfield - he can start the game, play at the top of the game and score goals.

“He's not an out and out number 10 or a sitter in midfield, he can play any position. His ability gives a different dimension to us."

Greene added: “I am really looking forward to getting out there and playing for Rovers.

“It’s my second time around with the club but I am older and more mature now and I will do everything that I can to be successful with Shamrock Rovers.

“I am from Tallaght and to play here means a lot to me. With a top three place, the Cup and European football ahead of us, I can’t wait to get started.”

Watts said: “This is a dream move for me. To come to a club like Shamrock Rovers and to be part of something really big here excites me and I absolutely want to be a part of that.

“I look forward to getting stuck in straight away in today’s game against Celtic and then we play AIK in the UEFA Europa league qualifier home and away – what a way to start!