After an injury plagued season last year Neil Harney has re-signed for St Pat's and the young defender has high hopes of enjoying a far better season in 2011.
19 year old Harney made his debut for the Saints last season when he started against Drogheda in the EA Sport Cup “I played centre half and though I normally play right full I thought I did fairly well but shortly after that I damaged my hamstring” said Harney.
“Once that settled and I got back playing with the reserves I got a dose of pneumonia which put me back a month or two”, added the Athlone native, “and then towards the end of the year I also needed an operation on my nose so overall it was very much a year to forget”.
Harney grew up playing soccer for local clubs St Colman's and St Joseph's in Athlone before making the move to Dublin side Belvedere.
Following four seasons at Belvedere, Harney had a short spell at UCD before Pete Mahon persuaded him to move to Inchicore.
Currently studying business in sport and recreation at Athlone DIT, Harney will be combining his college studies with playing for Pat's – “having played a few seasons with Belvedere I'm well used to travelling up and down to Dublin a few times a week so that won't be a problem and to be honest I just can't wait for pre-season to start”.
He added, “I missed pre-season training last year so I'm building myself up for training this time around doing plenty of gym work and getting a few runs in as well”.
Neil Harney becomes the 12th player to sign for Pat's ahead of the new season and with a number of defenders already on board, he knows that competition for places across the back four will be intense – “I'll just have to push myself as hard as I can and if I can take my chance when it comes then you never know where it might lead”.
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