Darragh O’Conner joined Leicester City from Wexford FC back in August 2019 and has since been a regular in the U.23’s under the command of Steven Beaglehole. The young defender, born in 1999, is one that could make it into the first team set up.Embed from Getty Images
This is the ultimate route to the first team from a football club’s point of view and it will less expensive than to buy a more or less “finished article” and just put him in the stands, as so many have in the past, but Darragh O’Connor is a grand talent and hopefully he will be able to take the next step.
He has so far this season played in 16 games and scored in 2, his goals came in the away fixtures v. Derby and Arsenal. This could be his make or break season at Leicester and as other players signed from lower league teams or from relatively unknown clubs abroad it’s a gamble to go to a major club and play for the academy teams.Embed from Getty Images
We have seen a few of them over the years with Ali Reghba also one of those, he also joining from Irish football and also in a make or break season with the club. It’s a difficult balance, but we have seen players such as George Thomas and Josh Gordon being signed for a minor fee, but really not been able to break into the first team, and by the time moved on to other league clubs.
It’s a fine line between getting through or just be one in the que. We have to wait and see how Darragh O’Connor will do, but surely Brendan Rodgers needs to give a player or two a chance every season to establish themselves in the first team squad, and if that happens then the job done is worth the effort.