Walsall miss out on Celtic defender Eoghan O'Connell
Walsall’s hopes of bringing back Eoghan O’Connell are over after the defender joined League One rivals Bury.
Saddlers boss Jon Whitney had been hopeful of re-signing the 21-year-old on a permanent deal from Celtic after he impressed while on loan at the Banks’s during the second half of the season.
But O’Connell, out of contract at Parkhead this summer, yesterday agreed terms on a three-year deal at Gigg Lane to rubber-stamp a free transfer from the Scottish champions.
The signing represents something of a coup for Bury boss Lee Clark who, ironically, was beaten to the loan signing of O’Connell by the Saddlers back in January when manager of Kilmarnock.
Cork-born O’Connell, a cousin of Irish rugby legend Paul, featured for the Hoops in the Champions League before making 17 appearances during his stay at the Banks’s.
Whitney will now turn his attentions to other defensive targets as he looks to reshape his squad ahead of next season.
The boss this week claimed two defenders have verbally agreed to join, while the club are waiting to hear back from academy product Matt Preston, who has been offered a new two-year deal.