Attacking midfielder Ryan Dow became Dunfermline's first new signing of the summer when he joined up today on a 12 month contract. Dow, 27, made the first senior starts of his career 9 years ago this month when he appeared in Dundee United's final 2 Premiership games of the 2009/10 season, a few weeks before his 19th birthday.
Over the following 5 seasons, which included a 5 month loan spell at Forfar in 2011, he gradually established himself in the United first team, making 28 appearances between his 2010 debut and the end of the 2012/13 season. In August 2013, Ryan spoke of his determination to become a regular in the United team: ''I see this as a massive season for myself. In the last two years or so I have been in and out of the team so I am hoping to keep my place and get a good run of games.
''I have always said that is all I am wanting not in and out. It has been frustrating over the last couple of years but it is down to me as I have maybe come in for games and not done well enough.''
The following 2 seasons saw him feature more regularly, playing 31 and 32 games. His manager at Tannadice during those 2 seasons was current Pars football consultant Jackie McNamara.
The video below shows Ryan scoring for United in 2014 (video owned by SPFL, linked from their YouTube channel):
In September 2016 Ryan signed for Ross County and went onto play 24 games that season. His second season in Dingwall saw him make 23 appearances. After playing his whole career at that point in the top division - except for that short period on loan at Forfar - it came as a surprise that he dropped down 3 divisions in 2018 when he joined Peterhead on loan. Peterhead manager Jim McInally told local press: ''Ryan had a good pre-season but I think Ross County see him as more of a super-sub type player and I know, feeling as fit as he does, he wanted the opportunity to play. I also think he wants to show people that he is fit and well and is prepared to go and do the graft.''
The loan deal was made permanent in January this year. Not surprisingly, he was one of League 2's top performers over the past season, helping Peterhead win the title.
Ryan will be a useful addition to next season's Pars squad. It is encouraging that he was prepared to go down the divisions to play football every week, which says a lot about his attitude. He now has an opportunity in the Championship to get his career back on an upwards trajectory. Able to play in midfield, on the wing or behind the main striker, his versatility will also be a positive.