Former Wanderers midfielder Luca Connell has joined Barnsley following his release by Scottish champions Celtic.

Connell joined the Whites’ youth ranks at the Under-9s age group and broke into the first team picture under Phil Parkinson during the 2018/19 season.

The midfielder’s performances in the Championship earned him a call-up to the Republic of Ireland Under-21 squad.

However, he was prized away by Celtic for a paltry fee the following summer amid Wanderers’ administration problems.

But opportunities were hard to come by for Connell at Celtic Park and the youngster failed to make a competitive appearance for the first team.

The 21-year-old spent the past couple of seasons on loan at Queen’s Park, playing alongside Ronan Darcy last term as the Spiders won promotion to the Scottish Championship under Owen Coyle.

“I’m over the moon to finally get it done,” he told the club’s website.

“Over the years there’s been some speculation about it happening, but I’m finally here and I’m happy to be a Barnsley player.

“My agent is from Barnsley, so he’s told me about the history of the club. He brought Hourihane and [Kieran] Trippier to the club, so there’s high standards.

“I just know that we need to bounce back to get this club back where it belongs.”

The Yorkshire club, who were relegated from the Championship last season, appointed Michael Duff as their new head coach earlier this week.

CEO Khaled El-Ahmad added: “We are pleased that Luca has chosen Barnsley to continue his promising career and are looking forward to seeing his development in a Reds shirt.”

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