WHAT A SEA­SON! FROM BARCA TO WAL­SALL

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By An­drew Law­ton

THE op­por­tu­nity for reg­u­lar game time has per­suaded Eoghan O’Con­nell to join Wal­sall on loan un­til the end of the sea­son from Celtic.

The 21-year-old had made just seven ap­pear­ances in this cam­paign for his par­ent club, though that does in­clude step­ping out at the Nou Camp for a Cham­pi­ons League group game against Barcelona.

But, af­ter fail­ing to ce­ment his spot in Bren­dan Rogers’ squad, the de­fender, cousin of for­mer Ire­land rugby cap­tain Paul O’Con­nell, is ex­cited to get go­ing.

“I’m re­ally look­ing for­ward to get­ting started,” he said. “I heard about the in­ter­est last week and it took per­haps a lit­tle longer to get done than we would have hoped.

“I spoke to the man­ager and he was re­ally keen for me to come down. As soon as I’d spo­ken to him, I was re­ally ex­cited to come here and be a part of it.

“Com­ing through at Celtic, we were al­ways taught to play it out from the back and I like win­ning games. I don’t like los­ing.

“I played a few games for Celtic at the start of the year, but I’ve not played as much re­cently and I wanted to get out and play.”

The Sad­dlers have also con­firmed that left-back Scott Laird will re­turn to the club on loan from Scun­thorpe United for the re­main­der of the sea­son.

The 28-year-old has scored three times in 22 ap­pear­ances for Wal­sall this cam­paign and was ex­cited to be re­united with the Sad­dlers’ sup­port­ers.

“I’m ab­so­lutely de­lighted to get it done,” said the de­fender.

“I can’t thank the fans enough for how they’ve taken to me.

“I had some big boots to fill with Rico (Henry), but I’d like to think I’ve done enough.

“I’m look­ing for­ward to crack­ing on in the sec­ond half of the sea­son.”

EX­CITED: Eoghan O’Con­nell

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