Former West Brom and Chesterfield star retires at 30 to take management job

Liam O'Neil appeared for West Brom's first-team five times. He played in the Premier League, and has retired at 30 to join Cambridge United. (Photo by Ben Hoskins/Getty Images)Liam O'Neil appeared for West Brom's first-team five times. He played in the Premier League, and has retired at 30 to join Cambridge United. (Photo by Ben Hoskins/Getty Images)
Liam O'Neil appeared for West Brom's first-team five times. He played in the Premier League, and has retired at 30 to join Cambridge United. (Photo by Ben Hoskins/Getty Images) | Getty Images
A West Brom midfielder that played in the Premier League under Pepe Mel, has decided to end his career at just 30.

Former West Brom midfielder Liam O'Neil has called time on his playing career at just 30-years-old. O'Neil came through the academy structure at The Hawthorn's, and after 11-years playing, he has decided to hang up the boots after an opportunity became available to him.

The Cambridge-born midfielder made five senior appearances for West Brom in total and can boast three Premier League appearances under his CV, having played under Pepe Mel. He spent three-years as a player in the Midlands, had loan spells at Finnish club Vaasan Palloseura as well as Scunthorpe United. O'Neil played regularly for the under-21's team at West Brom, and made 68 appearances for them with two goals and two assists.

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He left in August 2015 to join Chesterfield then in League One for an undisclosed fee, and made 49 appearances for the Spireites before departing for his hometown team Cambridge, where he made a total of 167 appearances, and helped the U's win promotion from League Two.

Months after leaving Cambridge after his contract was up, and joining National League outfit Boreham Wood, he is now returning to the League One outfit. He has been appointed the head coach of the under-18's team at Cambridge, despite making 11 appearances for Boreham Wood this season. O'Neil has decided to begin his management career early, and has expressed his excitement in playing a part in developing stars for the future.

"It's a really good opportunity for me to help develop young players and give back to a club which played a big part in my career both as a youth and first team player," O'Neil said to the official club website.

"My end-goal and end-reward now is to develop players into the first team. It's an opportunity I had to grab and I am very grateful to the club for giving me the chance. I am really ready to get going and can't wait to get into the flow of the job."

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