Jamie O’Hara is grateful to Lee Clark for giving him the opportunity to get his career back on track after signing a short-term contract at Blackpool.
The 28-year-old was once regarded as one of the brightest prospects in the country, having progressed from the youth team ranks to the first team at Tottenham Hotspur. O’Hara spent eight years at White Hart Lane in total, which also incorporated loan moves at Chesterfield, Millwall, Portsmouth and Wolverhampton Wanderers, who signed him on a permanent deal in 2011.
A former England Under-21 international, the midfielder is thought to have cost the Molineux club a fee in the region of £3.5million after initially impressing during his temporary spell, but during his first full season he underwent surgery twice which resulted in a lengthy layoff. When he returned the club were in the Championship, and in 2012-13 they were relegated to the third-tier.
In the summer of 2013 O’Hara was placed on the transfer list by manager Kenny Jackett, who also stripped him of a squad number. He was later given a reprieve in October but only featured twice as Wolves won the League One title and, in the summer, he was released when his contract expired. The former Spurs man, though, has now been handed a short-term deal at Bloomfield Road.
“I’m delighted this opportunity at Blackpool came along,” O’Hara, who has been handed a contract until 4 January, told the official club website on Wednesday. “Lee Clark gave me a call and I jumped at the opportunity. I’m desperate to get back on the football pitch. I’m really happy to be on board and hopefully I can help the team get some points on the board quickly.”
O’Hara will now hope to be handed his debut against Leeds United on Saturday. He joins a side who are rooted to the foot of the Championship table, having won just one of their opening 15 matches so far. Clark, who succeeded Jose Riga in the dugout towards the end of last month, faces a huge task to stave off relegation, as they are already nine points adrift of safety.