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Note that this page is from our Gresley Rovers archive.
It may not be related to the new club Gresley FC.
Story posted: Thursday, 7th December 2000

Return of the prodigal son
Story courtesy of Andy Parker - Burton Mail
Justin O'Reily

Justin O'Reily

Justin O'Reilly (pictured right) today rejoined Gresley Rovers, five years after leaving the South Derbyshire club in a record transfer.
O'Reilly, now 27, left Rovers for a professional career with Port Vale, then a Nationwide Division One club, in a 15,000 deal after being discovered playing parks football by Rovers' current caretaker boss, Alan Titterton.

But he failed to make the grade in the full-time ranks with his return to the Moat Ground marking the end of an odyssey that has taken in Southport, Ilkeston Town and Newcastle Town.

O'Reilly's switch from the Potteries club, which will involve a small fee, comes in time for the Alvaston - based frontrunner to make his Rovers return against Weston - super - Mare tomorrow (3pm).

Announcing details of the move today, Moat chairman Mark Evans revealed O'Reilly had been a target for former boss Brian Kenning, sacked eight days ago, for several weeks.

Said Evans: " It started when Brian was manager but it is something Alan Titterton has been heavily involved in from the outset.

"Other clubs have been interested in him but Justin just wants to play for Gresley Rovers and he's looking forward to coming back."

The move represents the return of Titterton's prodigal son, the caretaker boss having seen the fortunes of a player who first caught the eye playing for Rovers reserves go through more ups and downs than a Blackpool roller coaster over the last five years.

Said Titterton: " I took Justin off the park and we got him away to Port Vale. He went with (former Gresley boss) Paul Futcher to Southport but wasn't happy there because of the travelling.

"He went to Ilkeston who didn't want him to leave but he moved on to Newcastle for a fee and while he's scored goals for them he's not settled there, again because of the travelling. He's not played for a while but he's been keeping fit. He's got a little girl now and works long hours so he's happy to come closer home. He just wants to start enjoying his football again.

" I'm sure I can get him to play and I'm looking forward to seeing him pay alongside Simon Tucker. He'll be a great asset to the club because he's a tremendous player and I'm sure he'll be a crowd favourite again."

Tomorrow Rovers will be without Carl Middleton, Karl Reynolds, Adie Doughty and Ritchie Gardner through injury, while Dave King is unavailable and Ian Bluck's toe injury makes him doubtful.

But Rovers will be reinforced by the return of Steve Coates and Andy Cheetham.
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League Position
  Team P GD Pts
2 Marske United 12 8 22
3 Brighouse Town 13 7 22
4 Lincoln United 13 4 21
5 Tadcaster Albion 12 6 19
6 Belper Town 12 0 19
7 Gresley 13 -10 19
8 Ossett United 12 6 18
9 Pontefract Collieries 12 3 18
10 Stamford AFC 12 3 17
11 Frickley Athletic 11 -5 16
12 Loughborough Dynamo 11 8 15

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Sat, 27th Oct 2018, (Away)
Carlton Town
Integro League Challenge Cup 2nd Round
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Mickleover Sports
Derbyshire Senior Cup 2nd Round
Tue, 6th Nov 2018, 7.45pm (Home)
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