Belfast Telegraph

Comment: Good luck to Johnny Flynn, one of the good guys in the Irish League

Dream debut: Johnny Flynn celebrates a goal on his Ballymena debut back in 2007
Dream debut: Johnny Flynn celebrates a goal on his Ballymena debut back in 2007

By Billy Weir

Sad news this week that Portadown defender Johnny Flynn has decided to hang his boots up at only 29 years of age.

I remember when he burst onto the scene as a teenager at Ballymena United, Tommy Wright throwing him into the fray, and he looked a natural.

After just a handful of games he got a dream move to Blackburn Rovers but a combination of bad luck and injuries meant he never quite got to the level his undoubted talents could have taken him.

But he enjoyed footballing life at Chester, Accrington Stanley, Ross County, Falkirk, a move back home to Cliftonville and another spell at Ballymena hampered by injury, before moving on to the Ports in the summer.

However injuries means he is now calling it quits.

"All good things must come to an end," he said on Facebook this week.

"From scoring my debut goal in the CAS semi-final I've gone on to spend 11 years living what most people can only dream of.

"But the time has come for me to listen to my body and accept that my best days of football are behind me so time to focus on what's most important...

"Cheers to everyone who's supported me, good times and bad, I've enough memories to last a lifetime and am retiring a very happy man."

Manager Matthew Tipton paid tribute to his skipper after his brave announcement to call it a day.

"I know this couldn't have been an easy decision for Johnny to make, especially as he is only 29, but it shows the mark of the man that he has made this call instead of just sitting around on his money," he said.

Hopefully he won't be lost to the game, he has too much quality not to pass some of that on and is involved in a coaching business so the mighty Flynn isn't for disappearing just yet.

Good luck to Johnny, one of the good guys.

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