Defender joins Blades for undisclosed fee
Defender Jack O’Connell has joined Sky Bet League One side Sheffield United for an undisclosed fee. The 22-year-old centre-back completed a medical yesterday, Thursday 7 July, and signed a three-year-deal with the Yorkshire side this afternoon. He leaves West London after 18 months with Brentford having played 18 games in all competitions.
Jack came through the youth ranks at Blackburn Rovers and joined Brentford for an undisclosed fee during the January 2015 Transfer Window. He had loan spells at Rotherham United, York City and Rochdale before he joined The Bees, helping the latter win promotion from League Two in 2013/14. He went back to Rochdale after joining Brentford but spent the end of the 2014/15 campaign at Griffin Park as The Bees reached the Championship Play-Offs. He made his Brentford debut in the Capital One Cup against Oxford United last August and his first league game was against Bristol City four days later. He leaves The Bees having scored once in his 18 games, the equaliser in the West London derby against Fulham at Craven Cottage.
Dean Smith, Brentford FC Head Coach, said: “I am sorry to see Jack go. He is a great professional and he never let me or the Club down when he came in to the team. His game time was limited due to the number of centre backs we had. He wanted to play more as he wants to keep progressing. We could not guarantee that.
“I think this is a good move for him. Sheffield United are a big League One club. I wish Jack all the best and I am sure he will be back in the Championship soon.”
Co-Director of Football Phil Giles added: "I respect the fact that Jack's main focus at this stage of his career is to play games, and that he is prepared to drop down a division to achieve his aim. We were happy to agree a transfer which gave Brentford what we needed in terms of a transfer fee, and Jack the move that he needed for his career. We wish Jack well and hope that he follows the example of Alfie Mawson in gaining promotion from League One."