GAVIN Kilkenny has completed a loan move to join Championship outfit Stoke City from Cherries.

The Dorset club have also announced they have extended the midfielder's deal by another year - Kilkenny having signed a long-term contract in 2019. 

The 22-year-old has agreed a season-long stay at bet365 Stadium, having finalised a deal to join Michael O’Neill’s side.

Dubliner Kilkenny was a key figure in Cherries' team during the early part of last season, contributing heavily to the club's record 15-game unbeaten start to a league campaign.

However, of his 18 appearances in 2021-22, his outing on the final day against Millwall was the first time he had featured in the Championship since December.

Kilkenny was understood to have been close to joining Blackpool on loan during the January transfer window, but the move did not materialise.

Cherries have since added Joe Rothwell to their midfield ranks on a free transfer this summer, to go alongside the likes of Philip Billing, Jefferson Lerma, Lewis Cook, Emi Marcondes and Ben Pearson.

Discussing his future last month, now Cherries have been promoted into the Premier League, Kilkenny told the Irish Examiner: "Ultimately, you have to be realistic.

“With Bournemouth going into the Premier League, a lot of people are asking if I’m going on loan and that’s probably what I’m thinking now.

“I tried to go previously but they wouldn’t let me. Maybe they were right because I’ve seen a lot of loans not work out.

“It can be tough going on loan but I’ve two years left on my contract and, at 22, I’m at an age where a loan would be good for me.

“Even if it’s a case of going away for a year or six months, coming back and then playing, that’s an ideal situation."

Kilkenny joins a Stoke side who finished 14th in the Championship last season.

He played 83 minutes for Cherries at Stoke in October last campaign, as Scott Parker’s side recorded a 1-0 victory.