Essendon Bombers Training Session
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 19: Conor McKenna of the Bombers in action during the Essendon Bombers training session at The Hangar on March 19, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

Brisbane have confirmed the signing of former Essendon supporter Conor McKenna to a one-year deal.

The 26-year-old Irishman played 79 games for Essendon after being picked up as a rookie by the Bombers in 2014, making his debut in 2015.

Since hanging up the boots two years ago, McKenna has been playing in the Gaelic competition back in Ireland, but is now keen to return to Australian football.

The former Bomber met with Brisbane, Port Adelaide, St Kilda and Essendon in the past weeks, ultimately deciding on the Lions as his new home for 2023.

On Friday Brisbane confirmed the signing of McKenna, who will join through the pre-season Supplemental Selection Period.

“We see Conor being a player who further improves our list, particularly as he adds both run and speed,” Lions football boss Danny Daly said.

“He showed in his time at Essendon that one of his strengths is that he can play at both ends of the ground, and he can also win plenty of the ball.

“We look forward to Conor putting in a solid pre-season and helping us go that next step in 2023.”

The Lions will be able to pick up McKenna without giving up a draft pick under supplemental selection pick rules, with the dashing defender set to begin training with the club in the coming weeks.

McKenna joins fellow former Bomber Joe Daniher at the club, who moved north at the conclusion of the 2020 season.

“I am delighted to be joining the Lions at such an exciting time for the Club, both on field and off field, including the great new facilities at Springfield,” McKenna said.

“I wanted to come back to a Club that was playing deep into finals pushing for a premiership and Brisbane have been doing that for the last number of years.

“The Club has been great for both myself and my partner Amy in making us feel comfortable and putting foundations in place to make sure the move out goes as smooth as possible.

“I am really looking forward to getting back out and into the swing of things.”

McKenna will begin training with the Lions early next month.