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Young Irish defender forced to retire just eight months after captaining Hull City

Brian Lenihan featured in Ireland’s senior squad for Euro 2016 qualifiers against Gibraltar and Germany.

Lenihan captaining Hull City against Doncaster Rovers last August in the Carabao Cup.
Lenihan captaining Hull City against Doncaster Rovers last August in the Carabao Cup.
Image: EMPICS Sport

HULL CITY DEFENDER Brian Lenihan has this morning announced his retirement from professional football at the age of 23.

Lenihan joined Hull from hometown club Cork City in 2014 but his time in England has been hampered by a series of recurring knee injuries, which began during a loan stint at Blackpool.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone associated with Hull City AFC for the care and support I have received over the past four years,” Lenihan wrote on Twitter.

“From a medical point of view the staff have gone above and beyond for me and for that I will be forever grateful.

“In light of events late last year, it is with deep regret that I have had to retire from professional football. Having to retire at 23 is something I did not foresee, but such is life.

“This decision does not come lightly but due to the medical advice I have received it is an action that needs to be taken for my own well-being.”

He added: “Sometimes in life you need to give up on a lifelong dream to ensure you live a happy and more fulfilling life.”

Lenihan, a right-back who earned comparisons to Seamus Coleman during his time in the League of Ireland, made his final first-team appearance for Hull back in August when he captained the side in a 2-0 Carabao Cup defeat to Doncaster Rovers.

The Championship club showed their faith in Lenihan last summer by extending his contract, but unfortunately for the Irish U21 international — who featured in the senior squad for Euro 2016 qualifiers against Gibraltar and Germany — a promising career has been brought to a premature end.

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Paul Dollery

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