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Former Northern Ireland defender Conor McLaughlin announces his retirement

Conor McLaughlin File Photo
(Image credit: John Walton)

Former Northern Ireland international Conor McLaughlin has announced his retirement due to injury.

The 30-year-old had most recently been at Fleetwood, where he made 12 appearances after joining on a short-term deal in October, before leaving in January.

His international career spanned from 2011 and he made 43 appearances for Northern Ireland, scoring one goal.

“Unfortunately after 12 years as a professional footballer, I’ve been medically retired due to injury,” McLaughlin said on Twitter.

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“The last 18 months or so has been an extremely difficult time both physically and mentally. I’ve been lucky to have the time I’ve had in the game and thankful for every club that provided me with an opportunity.

“I’d like to thank everyone who has helped me along the way. My family, who have been there through the good times and bad, moved all around the country and sacrificed a lot for me. I’ve met some amazing people through football and made some unbelievable memories. Looking forward to spending more time with my family now and seeing what life has in store next. Could be an announcement soon.”

McLaughlin was released by Sunderland last summer, and has also played for Millwall, Shrewsbury and Preston.

His longest spell was his first at Fleetwood, between 2012 and 2017, making 172 appearances and scoring seven times.

McLaughlin’s last international appearance came against the United States in a friendly in March 2021.

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