At the end of July 2000, Norwich signed Arsenal youngster Brian
McGovern on a month's loan with view to a permanent deal. The
20 year old 6'4 defender, can play either as centre-back or right-back,
and was described as being even faster than Marc Overmars. Brian
spent a 2 month loan spell with QPR in 1999/2000 but they could
not afford the £500,000 fee that Arsenal wanted for him. An Eire
Under 21 international, he was initially signed as cover for the
injured Matt Jackson. He made his Norwich
debut on 29th July as a substitute in the pre-season friendly
Brian signed a permanent deal with Norwich on 21st August 2000
for an initial fee of £50,000 that could rise to £250,000 depending
on appearances etc. However he has found it difficult to break
into the Norwich defence, making just 10 appearances in 2001/02.
In August 2002, he submitted a transfer request for the sole reason
of the lack of first team opportunities. Even the pre-season injury
for Malky Mackay against Ajax did not
result in a recall for McGovern as midfielder Darel
Russell was used at right back !
Brian trained with Colchester United at the beginning of October
2002. Both clubs denied that he had agreed to join the Division
Two side on a trial basis. As such, he was illegible to feature
in a reserve game against Southend. Brian and Norwich parted company
by mutual consent on 18th October 2002. In early November 2002,
Brian could be found in Scotland training with SPL side Livingston.
Brian was expected to join Livingston but the FIFA transfer window
prevented cross-boundary transfers until January 2003. Instead Brian
trained with Peterborough in a friendly match with Arsenal and as
Marc Joseph had left to join Hull, the Posh were in need of a central
defender and Brian signed a non-contract agreement on 22nd November
2002. He made his debut for the Posh the following day in a 3-1
home defeat at the hands of Barnsley.
In March 2003, Brian returned to his native Ireland to sign for
St Patrick's Athletic in advance of the new Irish season that
is to kick off in April 2003. The following month, he was loaned
out to Longford who were experiencing a defensive crisis. He later
made this swtich permanent.
In July 2004, Inverness Caledonian Thistle manager John Robertson
revealed that he had spoken to Brian's agent about bringing Brian
to Scotland but nothing materialised. In March 2005, Brian was
loaned to Shamrock Rovers. By the March of the following year,
Brian had joined Bray Wanderers.