Barry Fry bemused by goalkeeper’s decision to turn his back on Peterborough United and English football

Peterborough United director of football Barry Fry admits he was bemused by goalkeeper Conor O’Malley’s decision to turn his back on English football.

Conor O'Malley (right) with Posh goalkeeping coach Mark Tyler.
Conor O'Malley (right) with Posh goalkeeping coach Mark Tyler.

The 25 year-old has asked Posh to release him when his current contract expires on June 30 rather than when the extended League One season ends.

O’Malley intends to give up professional football altogether and return to working in the finance industry in his native Ireland after revealing he ‘never enjoyed playing in England.’

Fry insists he only discovered O’Malley’s intentions when he sorted an emergency loan move to League Two side Mansfield Town in February.

“Conor had dropped to third choice for us so I thought he would be thrilled to go to Mansfield,” Fry said.

“Mansfield are good payers and they had the former Ireland international goalkeeping coach (Seamus McDonagh) working for them so it was the perfect move.

“But he turned it down and that was when he told me he was going to quit football and return to Ireland.

“That surprised me. It was the first I’d heard of it, but good luck to the lad.”

Current playing contracts are expected to be extended to cover the delay to the Football League season caused by the coronavirus crisis, but Posh will agree to O’Malley’s request as he is behind Christy Pym and Aaron Chapman in the Posh pecking order.

Posh signed O’Malley from League of Ireland side St Patrick’s Athletic in August, 2017, but he made just 34 appearances and hasn’t played since the 2-1 home defeat at the hands of Coventry in March, 2019.