Harps sign O'Grady as McHugh extends contract

Finn Harps have completed the signing of Sligo Rovers' Conor O'Grady ahead of the upcoming Airtricity League First Division Campaign.

Finn Harps have completed the signing of Sligo Rovers' Conor O'Grady ahead of the upcoming Airtricity League First Division Campaign.

The 30-year-old midfielder has been at pre-season training with the rest of James Gallagher's squad and could make his debut in next Sunday's friendly against Derry City at Finn Park.

Last season O'Grady was club captain for his hometown club Sligo, who won both the EA Sports and FAI Cups back to the Showgrounds.

Harps manager Gallagher feels O'Grady's signing could prove to a significant addition to his young squad.

"Conor has a reputation in the league as a formidable midfielder and I think he will definitely make us a better side," Gallagher said.

"Given that he is a relatively high profile player there was of course other clubs interested in getting his signature, so naturally we are delighted he has decided to come to Finn Harps.

O'Grady who also played for both Cork City and Derry City, before re-joining Sligo, has always looked on Finn Harps as one of the bigger clubs in the country.

"I have always enjoyed coming to play at Finn Park and always found it a very friendly place. ," he said. "Harps have always struck me as having huge potential and its unfortunate the club has not had a period of sustained success where that potential could be tapped into."

"However, I was very impressed with the Harps performance when getting narrowly beat in the Cup by Sligo Rovers last year. Harps certainly had the better of the second half and perhaps a draw would have been a fairer result.

"I am really looking forward to the challenge of helping Harps push on in the First Division."

Meanwhile, following discussions with manager Gallagher and chairman Joey O Leary, Kevin McHugh was happy to put pen to paper on a two-year deal over the weekend.

McHugh who scored 15 times for Harps last season is now looking forward to the forthcoming First Division campaign.

"When I came back last year, I said at the time I wasn't interested in returning as a token gesture," he said. "Therefore it's great to have everything sorted out and know the next two years of my career are now committed to the club.

"I believe James and Anthony (Gorman) are putting a competitive side together, and as one of the more experienced members of the squad I feel I can help with younger players in the panel."