O’Donnell parts company with Harps

Stephen O’Donnell might still have something to offer Finn Harps despite parting company with the club on Tuesday night.

Stephen O’Donnell might still have something to offer Finn Harps despite parting company with the club on Tuesday night.

The 30-year-old and manager Peter Hutton reached an understanding with Manorcunningham native O’Donnell citing work commitments.

O’Donnell, who has been in the Defence Forces for 12 years, currently works as a Private Company Clerk from his base at Finner Camp in Ballyshannon.

“I will be undertaking a six-month course in Dublin to become a NCO (Non-Commissioned Officer) from September until late February.

“It’s something I had planned to do before I picked up my injury but instead of trying to half-do both work and football I want to give the course my best shot as there’s a lot of preparation work to be done before I start.”

O’Donnell suffered a knee cruciate injury early last season having rejoined the club last January.

He missed over a year and made two appearances this term on his return - against Longford Town and Mervue United last month.

“It was a really hard decision to come to but I told Peter that I should be freed up again in February and we can have a talk and I will be available if the club want me. I’ve not retired or anything. It’s just work has to take priority for now.

“Everyone at Harps has been great, from Peter to the chairman Joey O’Leary, physio Mickey McGlynn and all the staff.

“I’d also really like to thank all the club’s fans for all the support they’ve given me.”

O’Donnell was at Harps’ Ulster Senior League side before scoring 10 times in the First Division for Sligo Roves in 2004.

He first joined Harps in 2006, having been signed by Anthony Gorman.

O’Donnell has spent his time in the colours of Kildrum, and his hometown club Lagan Harps, as well as lining out for the Irish Defence Forces.