Rochdale have signed Aston Villa defender James Finnerty on a two year deal.

The defender has said that he enjoyed his time with his old side but he is looking forward to a new chapter in Greater Manchester. 

He spent three years with the Midlanders, and now the centre back joins Keith Hill’s men at Spotland.

Despite never making a first team appearance for Villa, he played at a number of youth levels at Villa Park and his impressive displays have earned him a contract with the Dale.

He becomes Rochdale first new signing of the summer as Keith Hill will look to craft a squad that is capable of avoiding a relegation scrap next season.

Speaking to the club website, Finnerty said: “As soon as I heard that Rochdale were interested, I knew it would be a great opportunity for me,

“I’m well aware that the manager gives opportunities to young players, so it was a chance I didn’t want to turn down.

“I enjoyed my three years at Villa but I’m looking forward the fresh start and a new challenge. I’m delighted to get the deal done so early in the close season and I can’t wait to get started and to meet the lads when we return for pre-season.”

Dale had a fantastic run in the FA Cup last campaign, and Finnerty admits that it helped him get to know more about the side.

“I’m also aware of Rochdale’s FA Cup run this year, and the games against Spurs at the Crown Oil Arena and at Wembley, so I know a bit about the club already.”


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