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Club defend decision to sign Truro City keeper McCormick

By Rhod_Mitchell  |  Posted: February 01, 2013

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Oxford United have defended their decision to sign keeper Luke McCormick from Truro City.

The 29-year-old former Plymouth Argyle No 1, who in 2008 was found guilty of causing the death of two young brothers by dangerous driving, has signed for the npower League 2 club until the end of the season after ten  appearances for City.

He was released early from prison last year and his signing by Truro, when the club was in administration, caused a storm of national and local controversy and his arrival at the Kassam Stadium has already provoked an angry reaction from some Oxford  fans.

But Oxford manager Chris Wilder  told the club's website: "We are very mindful of the past and the situation. Luke is very contrite and sorry about what happened. 

"He was sentenced and went to prison and during that time had the opportunity to reflect on what he had done.  

"It is hard to separate the two, but purely from a football perspective he is an experienced goalkeeper who has played most of his games in League One and the Championship. 

"We have a situation here where our number one goalkeeper is out for the foreseeable future with a shoulder injury and we could lose Max Crocombe to International duty next month. We are offering Luke a chance to play again. 

"I have spoken to Luke at length and he knows that it will not be easy for him but he is very humble and wants to try and make the most of the opportunity." 

Club Chairman Ian Lenagan  added: "The tragic events in Luke's past will never go away and that is something he will have to bear for the rest of his days.  

"He made the biggest mistake of his life and no amount of apologies will ever change what happened. He served his sentence and knows what he did was wrong.  

"As a club we have thought long and hard about whether to employ a player with his background but his clear repentance and the opportunity to allow him to rehabilitate whilst meeting our unique goalkeeping situation within the Salary Cap - which we might otherwise not have been able to do - resulted in our decision to sign him."

There has not yet been any announcement on a replacement for McCormick for City's game at promotion-chasing Dover Ath tomorrow.  

Oxford have agreed to play a pre-season friendly at Treyew Road next season after signing McCormick who was with the culb on on a non contract basis.

And Truro chairman Pete Masters said of the transfer  this morning: ""At some point a chairman of a football club has to make a decision whereby you are damned if you do and damned if you don't.

"This moment came for me whilst in a relegation battle 48hrs before playing one of the top teams chasing for promotion in the Conference South League.

"The decision to transfer Luke McCormick our 1st Team Goalkeeper of undoubted ability to Oxford United according to those in the know and I understand the majority of Truro City supporters was the right one for the future of the club, from my perspective.  Only time will prove this one way or the other."

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  • TheGeofflane  |  February 01 2013, 1:05PM

    Whatever he did, however lenient you may believe his sentence to have been, he has a right to earn a living. How vengeful some people can be. Instead of letting him make something of his life some would prefer tax-payers supported him through unemployment benefit. I think he's brave to face a world filled with hatred and will regret what he did for the rest of his life.

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