Michael O'Connor (footballer, born 1960)

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For other people named Michael O'Connor, see Michael O'Connor (disambiguation).
Michael O'Connor
Personal information
Full name Michael O'Connor
Date of birth (1960-10-08) 8 October 1960 (age 56)
Place of birth Athlone, Ireland
Playing position Forward
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1979–1985 Athlone Town 151 (79)
1985–1987 Shamrock Rovers 18 (3)
1987–1988 Dundalk 25 (6)
1988–1996 Athlone Town ? (29)
National team
1982–1984 League of Ireland XI ? (0)
1981 Republic of Ireland U21 1 (0)
Teams managed
1992–1996 Athlone Town
2006–2007 Athlone Town
2013 Athlone Town (assistant)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

Michael O'Connor (born 8 October 1960 in Athlone) is a former Irish football player and manager.

Club career[edit]

O'Connor made his League of Ireland debut for Athlone Town on 4 March 1979. During his time at St Mel's Park he was twice top scorer in the League of Ireland in 1981/82 and 1984/85. He is also the all time leading scorer for Athlone.

He scored in the Parken Stadium in the first round of the 1981–82 European Cup.[1]

O'Connor signed for Shamrock Rovers in October 1985 and made his debut in a 3–0 win over Bohemians on 27 October. He scored his first goal for the Hoops on 17 November 1985 at Home Farm. He played in a memorable friendly win over Arsenal in February 1986 when his fellow Athlone man and ex-teammate Noel Larkin scored the winner. He played no part of the 1986/87 season due to a broken leg. He made one appearance in the European Cup in September 1987.

He left in October 1987 to sign for his brother Turlough O'Connor at Dundalk where he stayed for one season before returning to his hometown club.

In May 1995 he scored the decisive penalty to keep Athlone in the Premier Division.[2]

At the end of the 2012 League of Ireland season O'Connor is joint twenty seventh in the all-time League of Ireland goalscoring list with 117 league goals[3]

International career[edit]

On 25 February 1981, O'Connor played for Republic of Ireland U21 at Anfield.


In May 1992 O'Connor was appointed player manager at Athlone Town.[4] In the 1993–94 League of Ireland First Division season he guided them to promotion.[5]

However they got relegated by penalties in 1996 with Michael retiring as a player and resigning as manager.

He was appointed manager again for a second spell for the 2006 season.[6][7] His first game in charge was also the clubs first game at their new stadium in Lissywoollen but he resigned in July 2007.[5]

Personal life[edit]

The O'Connor name is synonymous with Athlone Town as another brother Padraig O'Connor played for the club.


Athlone Town

Shamrock Rovers



  1. ^ KB 1–1 Athlone UEFA.com
  2. ^ Irish Times (subscription required)
  3. ^ http://www.rsssf.com/tablesi/iertops.html
  4. ^ Irish Times (subscription required)
  5. ^ a b Athlone Town part company with O'Connor RTÉ Sport, 6 July 2007
  6. ^ O'Connor announced as new Athlone boss RTÉ Sport, 7 December 2005
  7. ^ O'Connor wields the axe at Athlone BreakingNews.ie, 14 December 2005