Rory Holden rejoins Walsall on permanent deal
Rory Holden has rejoined Walsall on a permanent deal from Bristol City for an undisclosed fee.
The 22-year-old spent last season on-loan at the Saddlers, making 36 appearances and scoring twice.
He had a mixed start to his campaign and came under fire from fans before putting in some superb performances in the second half of the season.
That led to fans calling for his return and the Northern Irishman insisted in an interview with the Express & Star last month that he would be 'open' to coming back to the Black Country.
Now, the midfielder has returned to the club, despite having a year – and the option of a further year – left on his Bristol contract.
Walsall have not announced the length of Holden's contract.
“I’m buzzing to be back,” Holden said.
“After last season, I wanted to come back and I had been speaking to the gaffer over the off season and I’m happy to get it done now and I can’t wait to kick on.
“Last season, it took a little bit of time for me to settle in but this year there won’t be that because I have made relationships with the staff and the lads who are here, so hopefully I can just hit the ground running and try and contribute as much as I can to the team.
“In my first season, you have to learn how people play and you have to learn about their game but this year I know what everyone is about and they know what I am like so it will be easy for me to settle back in.”
Meanwhile, manager Darrell Clarke wants Holden to pick up where he left off last term.
“As we all saw last season, especially towards the end of the campaign, Rory is a fantastic player,” Clarke said.
“He was somebody who we were really keen to work with again and I’m really pleased to see him back at the club permanently this time.
“Rory has an exceptional work ethic, which I mentioned last season, he knows the squad and what we’re about as a team and I’m really expecting him to push on again this season for us.”