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AFL | Conor McKenna announces shock retirement

Essendon defender Conor McKenna has announced his shock retirement from the AFL.

The Tyrone native, who amassed 79 appearances for the Bombers, has decided to leave the league at the age of 24 to return to Ireland.

McKenna joined Essendon in 2014, and made his AFL debut the following year against Richmond.

“I do really feel the time is now right for me to return home to Ireland,” McKenna told the club website.

“I’ve made no secret of the fact that at some point, I’d want to be returning home to my family and I’ve been weighing up the decision recently. It’s been a difficult year for everyone, but it’s also been a chance to take stock and weigh up several things in my life, so the time is right.

“I will always be grateful for Essendon’s support of both myself and my family since I arrived at the club from the other side of the world at the end of 2014.

“I will miss my teammates and coaches and I want to thank the Bomber fans for their support across the journey too. I will always wish the boys well and hope they see success in the not too distant future.”

McKenna cast his AFL future in doubt early this year when he returned to Eglish from Australia due to homesickness, but chose to return to Essendon for the 2020 season.

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