Daryl Fordyce and Albert Watson to leave champions Linfield

Irish Premiership champions Linfield have been rocked by the news that Daryl Fordyce and Albert Watson are emigrating to Canada.

Midfielder Fordyce and defender Watson informed Blues manager David Jeffrey they planned to leave Northern Ireland in early February.

"This news has left us in a difficult position," admitted Jeffrey.

"However, I would never want to stop anyone from following their wishes in life."

Both players joined Linfield at the end of the 2010/11 season.

Fordyce has made 73 appearance for Linfield since his move from Belfast rivals Glentoran, but has been a substitute for most of this season.

Former Ballymena United defender Watson has played in 67 games for the Blues.

Linfield have already targeted Ballinamallard United defender Mark Stafford as a replacement for Watson.

Ballinamallard revealed they have been contacted by Linfield about their captain who came up through the junior ranks at Ferney Park.

Mallards manager Whitey Anderson has made it clear he is anxious to retain Stafford, with last season's Championship One winners aiming to clinch a top six finish in their first season in the Premiership.

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