Richie Ryan will shine for Dundee United when they kick off their Europa League campaign, according to manager Peter Houston.
The Irishman moved to Tannadice in January but made just two starts, coming off the bench on 13 occasions as he struggled to break into the first team.
With United set to face Russian side Dynamo Moscow in Europe next week, Houston believes the 27-year-old will come into his own after a bright pre-season.
“Richie is a good player,” Houston told the Daily Record. “He’s calm in possession and can pass the ball which is the kind of player we’ll need in Europe.
“He’s had to be patient because last season we hit a run of form just after Richie had joined us and guys like John Rankin, Willo Flood and Scott Robertson were doing well in the middle.
“So he had to bide his time because his fitness levels were nowhere near what they should have been. But towards the end of the season he got a few games under his belt and looked the part.
“Now I have to say he’s looking a lot brighter and sharper and he’s done really well in pre-season games.
“I’ve said all along he’s talented and hopefully he can show that when we go into the European stage.”
Ryan, who moved to Scotland from Sligo Rovers, spent time in Belgium with Royal Antwerp in 2007, having previously been on the books at Sunderland, Scunthorpe United and Boston United.
A return to his native Ireland with Sligo Rovers in 2008 then relaunched his career, winning three trophies and a Player of the Year award with the side before switching to the Scottish Premier League.
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