By Will Butcher
Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe has heaped praise on midfielder Eunan O’Kane, describing him as a “great team player” following his move to Leeds.
The Ireland international moved to the Championship giants on transfer deadline day, signing a two-year deal with the Yorkshire-based club.
Speaking to the Bournemouth Echo, Howe hailed O’Kane and believes he was integral to the Cherries’ meteoric rise through the divisions to reach the promised land of the Premier League.
“I’m sorry to see any player go,” Howe said. “Eunan has been a massive part of our recent success. He has always shown a great attitude and been a great team player.
“He’s never moaned or been a disruptive influence when he has been out of the team.
“He has been invaluable to our climb up the leagues. He more than played his part going back to the Championship and League One days.”
The 26-year-old became Garry Monk’s 11th summer signing at Leeds, after bringing in the likes of Robert Green, Pablo Hernandez and Liam Bridcutt.
The former Torquay United midfielder will rival Bridcutt for a centre-midfield spot, as well as Kalvin Phillips, Ronaldo Vieira, Luke Murphy, Toumani Diagouraga and Matt Grimes.
Howe, who returned to the Vitality Stadium in 2012 after a short spell in charge of Premier League new boys Burnley, wished O’Kane the best of luck at Elland Road.
“We wish him well and hope he has continued success in his career,” Howe said. “He leaves on very good terms, as all our players who have been here a long time have.”
O’Kane has been with the Premier League club since 2012, when he joined from National league side Torquay for an undisclosed fee. He has gone on to make 118 appearances for the Cherries.
In other Leeds news, this former target is set to pen a new deal elsewhere in the coming days.