Seagulls swoop for former U's star

FORMER Colchester United assistant manager, Micky Adams, is poised to snap up his second ex-U's star within a week.New Brighton & Hove Albion boss Adams, who was appointed to the Withdean Stadium hot-seat on a permanent basis in May, is chasing defender-cum-striker Adam Virgo.

Carl Marston

FORMER Colchester United assistant manager, Micky Adams, is poised to snap up his second ex-U's star within a week.

New Brighton & Hove Albion boss Adams, who was appointed to the Withdean Stadium hot-seat on a permanent basis in May, is chasing defender-cum-striker Adam Virgo.

The 25-year-old was deemed surplus to requirements at Layer Road, at the end of his loan spell from Celtic last season, and Adams is hoping to step in and be reunited with his former player.


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Seagulls manager Adams moved quickly to sign left-winger Kevin McLeod from Colchester last week, after the former Everton 27-year-old turned down the offer of a new deal with the U's.

McLeod opted to sign a two-year contract with League One rivals Brighton instead, and now his old team-mate Virgo could be following him to the south coast, and so playing against the U's next season.

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A number of clubs are reported to be interested in signing unsettled Celtic man Virgo, but the Seagulls have a head-start because of two reasons - firstly, Brighton is his home town and his first club; and secondly, he has already played under Adams at Brighton, Coventry and Colchester (when he was an assistant to Geraint Williams).

Brighton is where Virgo has enjoyed his happiest times. He came up through the youth ranks at the Withdean and it was Adams who gave him his professional debut, which eventually culminated in a surprise £1.5m move to Scottish giants Celtic during the summer of 2005.

It never really worked out for Virgo at Celtic Park - he started just three games in the Scottish Premier Division - which resulted in season-long loans at Coventry (2006-07) and then Colchester (last season).

It is no secret that Virgo is a big admirer of Adams, as he revealed when he first moved to Colchester.

He said at the time: "Micky Adams has been my mentor for a long time and he gave me my professional debut for Brighton.

"Working with him turned out to be an advantage for me at Coventry, and it hope it will be here at Colchester."

Virgo struggled for consistency in a struggling side last term.

Although centre-half is his preferred position, he began his U's career as an emergency striker, coming off the substitutes' bench in his first few games.

He went on to make 37 appearances for the U's, featuring in 36 of the 46 league games. He scored one goal, an 88th minute consolation in the 3-2 home defeat by Burnley at the beginning of September.

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