Collingwood defender Mark Keane has been permitted by the club to return to Ireland before season's end, per AFL.com.au.

The 21-year-old is understood to have ventured back home in the past week and will aim to return to Australia prior to Christmas in order to prepare for the 2022 season.

The former Gaelic star joined Collingwood as a Category B Rookie in 2018, and has since played five games for the Magpies after making his debut last season.

Keane has played four matches this year in the black and white, with his opportunities limited due to a finger injury prior to the season's commencement.

Collingwood gave Keane the nod to return to Ireland and be with his long-term partner despite the AFL season having three rounds remaining.

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Following their loss to Hawthorn on Sunday, Collingwood will continue their pursuit for a seventh win of the season with matches against the Lions and Bombers to end their 2021 campaign.