Kenny McEvoy has revealed how influential York City manager Jackie McNamara proved in securing his permanent move to the League Two club from Tottenham Hotspur. The 21-year-old has completed his permanent switch to Bootham Crescent after the termination of his deal in north London.
McEvoy made the decision to leave Spurs five months ago, however legal wrangling meant he was not able to complete his exit from White Hart Lane until the current January transfer window. The Republic of Ireland Under-21 international enlisted a lawyer to help him leave Mauricio Pochettino's side, despite being promised a new contract at the club.
The winger moved to York on loan in November following a spell at Stevenage, making four appearances including in the weekend loss to Yeovil Town in the first game of 2016. McEvoy has now extended that arrangement until the end of the season after leaving Tottenham and says McNamara was key to the deal being completed.
"He (Jackie McNamara) was a massive factor," McEvoy revealed to York's official website. "Knowing what he has done elsewhere showed me that he does give people a chance if they deserve it. I've just got to make sure that I'm one of those players by continuing to work hard and hopefully get into the first team.
"It's the real world and I am looking forward to seeing what I'm capable of in men's football. I know I'm nowhere near the finished article yet though. I just need to keep working hard to improve every aspect of my game and then hopefully show what I can do by playing as many games as possible."
During five years at Tottenham, McEvoy failed to make a single senior appearance for the club despite Pochettino's continued commitment to promote players from the academy into the first team. The youngster admits countless run-outs for the club's Under-21 side made adapting to regular appearances for York tough.
"It's been tough coming from Tottenham where you play a lot of pass and move, to here when you need to work harder and be defensively on it all the time," he added. "In Under-21 football you can maybe get away somewhat with your defensive duties but everything is watched at this level and you need to make sure you are working for the team.
"It's a lot more draining mentally because it's key you are always in the right position and helping everyone out before then thinking about going forward and creating chances and goals which hopefully I can add to the team. I think it's brilliant to be playing proper, competitive football though. I just want to start my football career now and then the rest is down to me."