Striker Ciaran O'Connor returns to Finn Harps following Dundalk departure

Fri, Dec 15 2017

O'Connor scored five goals in 14 games on loan at Harps in 2017. Credit: Darragh Connolly

Finn Harps have secured the permanent signing of Ciaran O'Connor after striker parted company with Dundalk at the end of last season.


The Dundalk native had spent the first half of last season on loan at Finn Park and scored five goals in 14 games as Ollie Horgan's side reached the midway point in good form.


21-year-old O'Connor spent the second half of the season at Bohemians, where he didn't manage to get his name on the scoresheet, while Harps slid to relegation in his absence.


With opportunities likely to be limited once again with thre Lilywhites, he opted to leave Oriel Park at the end of the season in search of regular football.


That is likely to come in Ballybofey, where he's spent the most fruitful period of his young career, thought it will mean dropping down divisions for the first time.


“Ciaran played for us in the first half of last season and got five goals,” Harps manager Ollie Horgan told the club's official website.


“We’re pleased that he has agreed terms for next season. He’s still only 21 but has gained a lot of experience over the past four years in the League of Ireland.


“So hopefully that will be a big help to Ciaran and ourselves in terms of the standard of teams we well be up against in the First Division.”


O'Connor – whose brother Michael also played for Dundalk before joining Shamrock Rovers at the beginning of last season – came through the ranks at Dundalk.


He made his debut for the senior team in 2013 while still involved with the under-19s and was promoted to the first team squad the following year.


Loan spells with Warrenpoint Town in the Northern Irish Premiership and Derry City followed in 2014 and 2015 before he linked up with Harps at the beginning of 2016.