Talks over Owen Garvan’s departure had been ‘going on for weeks,’ reveals Colchester United boss John McGreal

Owen Garvan, watching his Colchester United team-mates playing at Exeter. Garvan left the club this

Owen Garvan, watching his Colchester United team-mates playing at Exeter. Garvan left the club this week, by mutual consent. Picture: RICHARD BLAXALL - Credit: Richard Blaxall / Colchester Uni

Colchester United boss, John McGreal, has revealed that discussions with Owen Garvan had been going on for several weeks, before an agreement was reached for the player to leave the club.

Garvan has been allowed to leave the U’s before the end of his contract, which was set to expire this summer.

“Owen did terrifically well for us, to get us out of the position (relegation zone) that we were in,” explained McGreal, following today’s press conference ahead of the big home match against already-promoted Doncaster Rovers on Good Friday.

“The club has been liaising with Owen over the last six weeks and we’ve come to an agreement on both sides.

“We’ve agreed that Owen can move on, and that’s it really.

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“It’s been going on for weeks. It’s not just happened on a whim, Owen has been in a dialogue with the club for quiet a while.”

Experienced midfielder Garvan had not played since the 4-0 home defeat to Portsmouth on March 11, due to injury, missing the last five games.

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The Dubliner had originally sat out the first three months of the season, due to a pre-season leg injury, but his eventual return to the team coincided with the U’s ending a woeful 13-game winless run, with a 3-0 win at Cheltenham on November 22.

Garvan played a key role in transforming the U’s season from one of a potential struggle against relegation, to a strong push for the play-offs.

U’s Director of Football Tony Humes said: “Owen came to us and requested the opportunity to leave the club for personal reasons. We have been working with him over the past few weeks to resolve the situation in the best way possible.

“We have now managed to reach a conclusion on our conversations with him and we have come to a mutual agreement to allow Owen to depart.”

Garvan’s first 11 appearances of this term featured eight wins, three draws and no defeats. In all, he made 50 league appearances for the U’s since his arrival from Crystal Palace in the August, 2015.

The U’s entertain league leaders Doncaster on Good Friday, and then travel to mid-table Morecambe on Easter Monday.

McGreal said: “It’s a big weekend for the club, especially this Friday with the visit of Doncaster.”

“That’s a great game for us. We’ve been waiting for these sort of games to come around, against the teams in and around us in the league.

“These games tend to bring the best out of ourselves, and the fans.”

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