Ex-Irish League midfielder in 'no regrets' message as he makes emotional post

Photo shows Ryan Harpur in action with Ryan Catney back in 2011
-Credit: (Image: Inpho)


Former Irish League midfielder Ryan Harpur has urged any footballer to have "no regrets" as he announced his retirement from the game.

The 35-year-old played for clubs including Portadown, Glenavon, Dungannon Swifts, Ballymena United and Annagh United, after starting his career with Everton.

Harpur took up a role as player/coach with Dungannon last summer and made three Premiership appearances last season, but he has now made the tough decision to hang up his boots.

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He said on social media: "I knew this day was always going to come, I just never realised how fast it would come ….. play every game as if it was your last. Enjoy every moment no matter what the level.

"I’ve been privileged to have played for some great clubs, represent my country and have met friends for life.

"I’d like to thank personally every club , manager and players that I’ve played with throughout the last 25 years from where it all started to it ending now. I’ve met some fantastic people and friends that I will be forever grateful for."

Harpur says he had to deal with rejection at a young age after making the move to Everton as a young teenager, but he has always bided by the sage advice handed down to him by his father.

He added: "Personally it all started with a lot of promise, before accepting rejection at a young age. “It wasn’t to be”. My dad told me to have no regrets when I left home at 16 , and that has stayed with me throughout my journey. I have no regrets!!

"I’d like to thank my mum and dad for all they have done for me from such a young age and giving me the best chance to do what I always dreamt of doing from I was 10 years old. Unfortunately it didn’t turn out the way I might have liked but have loved and enjoyed every second of it."

Harpur also had special praise for Dungannon Swifts, where he spent the longest part of his career. It is also the club he won the League Cup with back in 2019.

"The longest part of my playing career was spent at Dungannon Swifts FC ….. a great club with - lot of very special people associated with it. I’m not from Dungannon but have been made feel as if I am. I’ll be forever grateful," he added.

"Thanks to my wife and two daughters who have and continue to support me throughout the entire journey

"To all the staff , players and fans at Portadown FC, Everton FC, Glenavon FC, Dungannon Swifts FC , Ballymena United FC and Annagh untied FC. Thank you for everything.

"HAVE NO REGRETS!!"

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