Press release from Sunderland AFC:
Sunderland are trying to sign Republic of Ireland midfielder Colin Healy before Saturday’s First Division opener with Nottingham Forest. The club has held talks with the former Celtic midfielder but there are a number of issues to get straight before the deal can go through.
Healy, who left Celtic at the end of last season, has agreed personal terms with the Black Cats and the player passed a medical last night.
Now the deal rests on whether Sunderland will have to pay compensation
to Celtic. Under FIFA rules, no compensation is due to a player’s former club once he reaches the age of 23, which Healy did in March. But there is a grey area over the rules involving the transfers of players between English, Irish and Scottish clubs – something Sunderland and Healy’s agent are examining.
A Sunderland spokesperson said today: “We have been in talks with Colin Healy and his agent to agree personal terms and he has passed a medical. The situation now is that we are waiting for his agent to confirm that he is free to move to Sunderland on a Bosman and that there will be no compensation due to Celtic.
“Celtic have referred his agent to the International Football League Board agreement, which governs moves between English, Irish and Scottish Leagues under which they say compensation is still payable for a player aged 23 years and under.
“FIFA regulations state that no compensation is payable once a player
has reached 23 years. As there is a disparity between the two sets of
rules, and as Colin is aged 23, we need this to be clarified before we can proceed any further.”
Born: 14 March 1980, Cork, Ireland
International Caps: 9
Celtic 01.08.98 to present time – 27 apps, 3 goals
Coventry City (Loan) 29.1.02 to 22.4.02 – 17 apps, 2 goals
Last season, Colin made only five appearances for Celtic, unfortunately not making the scoresheet in any of them: once in the UEFA Cup, once in the Scottish League Cup, twice in the Scottish FA Cup and only once in the Scottish Premiership.
He also made five starts for the Republic of Ireland and scored the second goal in Ireland’s 3-0 defeat of Finland in a friendly fixture. In June this year he played the full 90 minutes in his country’s important European Championship qualifier against Georgia, when Ireland beat their opposition 2-0.