Joe Riley: Defender approved Plymouth Argyle deal on wedding day

Joe Riley
Joe Riley joins Argyle having reached the League One play-off final and played in the Premier League

They say your wedding day is the happiest of your life, and for new Plymouth Argyle full-back Joe Riley it proved doubly so.

The 26-year-old, who had just been on the losing side with Shrewsbury in the League One play-off final, was about to get married to his fiancee Kayleigh when he found out the Pilgrims wanted to sign him.

"I had a quick check of my phone and I had a text off my agent saying Plymouth are interested," he told BBC Devon.

"I said 'go for it'.

And when asked what was better on his wedding day - his nuptials or the contract offer from Argyle - Riley quipped: "It was a tough call."

Joe Riley wedding photo
Joe Riley's new wife sums up a day that saw him tie the knot and agree a deal with a new club

Riley began his career as a youngster at Bolton Wanderers, but after Premier League starts against Stoke City and West Bromwich Albion, as well as a substitute appearance at boyhood favourites Manchester United, his progress was hampered by a succession of injuries.

A broken foot put paid to much of his second season at Bolton and he missed all of the 2013-14 campaign with knee ligament damage sustained in pre-season.

He went out on loan to Oxford United, which was followed by a free transfer move to Bury in January 2015 where the full-back rebuilt a career which has seen him play almost 150 games.

"I'm just happy to be here and hopeful that it can be a successful time," he said of his move to Home Park.

Old face as new chief executive

Michael Dunford
Michael Dunford has also held roles at Everton and Derby County

Off the field, Argyle have re-appointed Michael Dunford as chief executive.

Dunford held the role between 2004 and 2009 before being made redundant during the financial problems that almost saw the club fold.

Since then he has held similar roles at Birmingham City, Crawley Town and Chesterfield and replaces Martyn Starnes who left earlier this year to become chief executive at Bristol Rovers.

"The club is certainly different to the one I left in 2009 and I have been extremely impressed with the ambition shown by chairman James Brent, vice-chairman Simon Hallett and fellow Board members," Dunford told the club website.

"I am really looking forward to building a solid working relationship with Derek Adams, who has given all our fans hope that our on-the-field fortunes will continue to improve."

One more new signing

Argyle manager Derek Adams says he expects to bring in a midfielder on loan as his final signing of the summer.

Adams has already brought in 10 new players this summer in all areas of the field as the club look to build on a season which saw them rise from bottom of the table to play-off contenders.

"When you come into any football club you need to have new blood, but you have to have the continuity of the ones that have done well. for you in previous seasons," he told BBC Radio Devon.

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