St Mirren sign Sean McLoughlin and Jonathan Obika on the eve of the new season

Hull defender Sean McLoughlin has joined on a six-month loan and former Oxford striker Jonathan Obika has arrived on a two-year deal.

By Press Association Published: 02 August 2019 - 6.02pm

Sport

Football

Scotland

St Mirren have continued their last-ditch strengthening of their squad ahead of the Ladbrokes Premiership season with the capture of two players.

Hull defender Sean McLoughlin has joined on a six-month loan and former Oxford striker Jonathan Obika has arrived on a two-year deal.

Jim Goodwin’s double swoop on the eve of Saturday’s Premiership opener against Hibernian at Easter Road makes it four new arrivals this week following the earlier signings of winger Ilkay Durmus and midfielder Sam Foley.

Obika began his career at Tottenham and has had spells with Yeovil, Millwall, Crystal Palace, Peterborough, Swindon, Charlton and Brighton.

The 28-year-old told St Mirren’s website: “I got a call from the gaffer and he told me about the club and the ambition for the season and it felt like a good fit for me.

“The Scottish Premiership draws a lot of attention and I have a few friends that have played in Scotland and they’ve said I have to experience it.

“I’m powerful, I want to bring goals, pace, I’m someone who will work hard always and I like to play with a smile on my face. I’m looking forward to putting myself out there.”

McLoughlin, 22, only signed for Hull last week from Cork City but the centre-back had been on St Mirren technical director Gus MacPherson’s radar.

Goodwin told the club website: “Gus had watched him last season and I have contacts back in Ireland as well that we got really solid references from.

“We watched a lot of footage of him and he’s tipped for big things so we are delighted to have him in the squad.”

Meanwhile, Foley says he was convinced to make his switch after receiving a list of glowing references hailing Goodwin and Scottish football.

The 32-year-old former Newport, Yeovil, Port Vale and Northampton player said: “The move came about after I got a phone call from the manager and we had a great chat. He sold me the dream I suppose.

“He spoke very highly of the club and of Scottish football. We hit it off and everything he said really struck a chord with me.

“I’d not really thought about coming up here before but I spoke to a few lads who had been up here and the decision was easy in the end after that.

“I spoke to Ash Taylor at Aberdeen and Gary Warren, who used to be at Inverness and is a close mate. He couldn’t speak highly enough of the game up here. His word was good enough for me.

“I also spoke to David Buchanan, who played with the manager here at Hamilton. He’s another good friend of mine and told me that he was a hard working player and that reflects what he’s like as a person.

“The references I was getting were from people I trust. I spoke to these lads after I’d already spoken to Jim and had an idea of what he was like – but what I heard back just made my mind up.”