Finn Harps sign Paddy McCourt

Paddy McCourt will make a return to the League of Ireland in 2017 after signing for Finn Harps.

The Northern Ireland international had been without a club following his departure from NIFL side Glenavon in December and is looking forward to the beginning of a new chapter with the Donegal outfit.

“It’s a good set-up here with Ollie Horgan and Paul Hegarty, who are doing a good job,” said McCourt.

“I’m looking forward now to being part of the squad for the new season and I want to play my part in keeping Harps in the Premier Division.”

The addition of McCourt, who counts the likes of Celtic, Barnsley, Brighton and Derry City among his former clubs, represents quite a coup for the Ballybofey side and manager Ollie Horgan is hopeful that he can contribute as they look to retain their Premier Division status.

“Paddy is a very experienced player who we hope will be big asset to us for what is going to be a very tough season,” Horgan said.

He added: “He has that natural ability to make things happen and we will need him to produce that quality because we are going to be up against very well organized defences in this division.

“We hope his presence will give all at the club a bit of lift for Friday night’s game against Cork City.”

McCourt, 33, began his professional career with Rochdale before returning to Ireland with Shamrock Rovers. The attacking midfielder signed for his hometown club Derry City in 2005, helping them to three League Cups and the FAI Cup.

His form at the Brandywell earned him a move to Celtic in 2008 and he spent five seasons at Parkhead before moving to England, where he enjoyed various spells in the Championship, League One and League Two.

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