JUNIOR Ogedi-Uzokwe admits that he is unsure what the future holds – but his time at Derry City has been beneficial for player and club.
The Londoner spent the season on loan from League Two side Colchester United. A hat-trick last night in a 4-0 win against Finn Harps sealed European qualification for Derry and bagged Ogedi-Uzokwe the golden boot.
Last night’s treble took the 25-year-old past Pat Hoban of Dundalk and onto 14 Premier Division goals.
“I was so happy,” he said.
“That’s only my second professional hat-trick.
“It felt great, especially at home.
“As long as we won and get to Europe, I was happy. It’s a massive bonus. I’m just happy. It’s crazy.”
In June, the prolific Okedi-Uzokwe hit a hat-trick in a 4-1 rout of Cork City at Turner’s Cross.
The player has been a real hit on Foyleside, but uncertainty abounds now that his loan spell is over. Initially, Ogedi-Uzokwe was due to stay until the end of June, but that deal was extended.
He said: “I’ve enjoyed my time here. I don’t know what the future holds, but I’ve really enjoyed the time at Derry City.
“I think I can do a lot more. The team has been great with me and really helped me to settle in.”
Ogedi-Uzokwe praised the Candystripes manager Declan Devine, saying of the Creggan man: “Deckie is great at motivating us before games and he gets everyone going. Everyone buys into the plan he has.”
Last night’s derby win means that European football will return to the Brandywell in 2020.
Ogedi-Uzokwe said: “Everyone is so happy, buzzing. It’s amazing.
“ We wanted to finish on a high and we did that. We worked hard for each other. We worked very hard off the ball to get it back. We had to give the fans something to cheer about.
“Getting the win and getting to Europe is massive.”
Sports writer from St Johnston, now based in Letterkenny, with ten years’ experience covering sport in Donegal. Was a nominee for NUJ Sports Journalist of the Year in 2010. Honoured by the Donegal Boxing Board in 2016 for his coverage on the sport.