Johnny Black has spoken of his disappointment after his proposed move to Coleraine has fallen through.
The defender, who is currently plying his trade in Australia, had agreed terms for a return to The Showgrounds.
But it won’t now happen as his season with Oakleigh Cannons will now run into the middle of September as they are challenging for league honours.
“I can’t sign back home now unless I get released before start of September, which I can’t really do as the team I’m playing for are going for the championship and our games run to the 14th September,” explained Black.
“I had planned to stay home until just after Christmas, but it looks like it will only be two weeks in October for a friend’s wedding, I’ll no doubt attend a Coleraine game when I am home though.
“It’s disappointing as I would have liked to work with Oran again as I feel he’s been the manager to get the best out of me. I loved my time there before, but unfortunately rules are rules and neither of us can do a thing about it.”
Bannsiders boss Kearney is also disappointed he will now not have Black in his panel.
“When Johnny and I spoke his team didn’t look to be really challenging for the title, which me,” explained Kearney.
“However, they have gone on a great run of late, and Johnny has been pretty instrumental in that run, and they are now in contention for the play-offs.
“Unfortunately for us that means Johnny will still be playing for them once the transfer window closes which means he cannot sign for us.
“It’s disappointing as we all know how good a player Johnny is and how much of a positive influence he would have had on and off the pitch.
“We are as disappointed about this as Johnny is as I know just how much he was looking forward to coming back. It’s out of our hands though due to the transfer regulations.”
Meanwhile, the Bannsiders have confirmed goalkeeper Eugene Ferry has moved to Institute on loan for the rest of the season following the arrival of Michael Doherty.