Date:Tuesday February 2 2010
Kristian O'Leary has left Swansea City after spending 15 years at the club.
The Port Talbot-born defender-turned-midfielder started his career off at the Vetch Field when he came through the youth ranks and he spent his entire career up until now with the Swans.
The loyal servant to the Swans has experienced everything at the club, from the depths of the Football League and coming agonisingly close to relegation to the Conference, to success like League promotion and big games at the Millenium Stadium.
O'Leary has struggled to be involved within the team in the last 3 years or so and he hasn't played regularly in the side since Kenny Jackett was manager.
O'Leary has left by mutual consent to pursue other interests and he told the Official Site:
'It's going to be a strange feeling not going in to training every morning with the boys,''
'The Swans have been a major part of my life for nearly two decades.
'I had to think long and hard about finishing with Swansea, but it was a decision I made with the backing of my family. It means I am now free to try and get another club and start playing regularly again.
'It's been a long and interesting road since I first joined the club in 1992. It's important for me to thank everyone who has helped me along the way, especially the fans, but there are far too many individuals to mention.
'Hopefully I will be back at Swansea one day. I've got a huge desire to return as a coach, so we'll have to wait and see what develops in the future.''
It'll be good to see O'Leary pursue his career by playing football regularly. It would be a shame to see him end his career in the Swansea City Reserves and he could certainly do a good job for a lower League side.
Chairman Huw Jenkins appreciated O'Leary's hardwork and dedication to the club and he said:
'Kristian is a rare breed in today's game,''
'There aren't many players who serve a club long enough to get a testimonial these days, let alone give nearly 15 years service as a professional.
'He's always been an honest and hard-working footballer who has been through everything with this club. I think he's seen it all over the years.
'He's been a part of Swansea City Football Club on a daily basis for a very long time, during which he has always conducted himself as a gentleman and true professional.
'It goes without saying that we thank him for all his efforts and loyalty over the years and wish him and his family well for the future.''
Date:Tuesday February 2 2010
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