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Forrester to rejoin Saints

Personal reasons force Dub to leave Dons for Inchicore return

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LEAVING EARLY: Chris Forrester has left Abderdeen by mutual consent and will rejoin St Patrick’s Athletic. Photo: Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

LEAVING EARLY: Chris Forrester has left Abderdeen by mutual consent and will rejoin St Patrick’s Athletic. Photo: Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

Getty Images

LEAVING EARLY: Chris Forrester has left Abderdeen by mutual consent and will rejoin St Patrick’s Athletic. Photo: Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

Former Ireland U21 cap Christopher Forrester will become a Saint again and try to relaunch his career in Ireland with St Patrick's Athletic after his contract with SPL side Aberdeen ended due to family reasons.

The Dons confirmed that Forrester (26) would return home as his deal had been terminated.

"Aberdeen Football Club can confirm we have agreed to terminate Chris Forrester's contract. Everyone at the club also wishes Chris all the very best in the future," the club said in a statement.

Forrester only signed a three-year deal with the Pittodrie outfit last summer and he had hoped that a move to Scotland, from Peterborough United, could kick-start his career and help him progress at international level.

The midfielder had battles with injury and was unable to force his way into the side under Derek McInnes, starting just one SPL game for the Dons.

He also had to deal with personal issues, particularly a family bereavement before Christmas, and the club have agreed to allow him return home.

"It's with a lot of sadness and regret that we've terminated Chris's contract. At his request we've allowed him to be back with his family in Ireland," manager McInnes said.

"He's had a lot to contend with in his personal life and as a club, we have an understanding of the situation and we wish him well with his future career."

Clubs in Ireland were very keen to land the midfielder. His previous clubs, Bohemians and St Patrick's Athletic, both wanted to add Forrester to the ranks while Liam Buckley, who managed him at St Pat's, was also eager to bring the midfielder to Sligo Rovers. But new Pat's boss Harry Kenny looks to have won the chase and once they can get Forrester to put pen to paper this week, the Saints will have pulled off a major coup, following earllier sigings like Mikey Drennan and Gary Shaw.

A product of northside nursery club Belvedere, he made his debut for Bohs as a teenager in 2011, tasting Europa League action in his first season, and moved to the Saints at the start of the 2012 season.

Trial

Forrester made his Ireland U21 debut in 2013 while on the books of the Saints and won Premier Division and FAI Cup medals with the Inchicore club, also starring in the Europa League, and while a trial at Wolves was not a success, Peterborough United signed him midway through the 2015 season for a reported fee of £150,000.

He impressed with the Posh, was appointed club captain and he was named in the provisional senior Ireland squad for two friendlies before the Euro 2016 finals, though he didn't get to travel.

Forrester earned rave reviews for his display with Posh in an FA Cup defeat to Chelsea in January 2017 and he was linked with a move to a higher league, Peterborough touting the Dubliner as a £4million player.

But he suffered a loss of form and also lost the captain's armband with Peterborough, the club then agreeing to sell him to Aberdeen in 2018.

"We've been aware of him for a while and hopefully he sees Aberdeen as an opportunity to give impetus to his career," manager McInnes said after Forrester's arrival.

He played for the Dons in the Europa League but was unable to work his way into the side, just one start in the league. Following the sudden loss of a close family member in November, boss McInnes has reluctantly agreed to allow the player move on for his next chapter back in Dublin, and back in Inchicore.