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Finn Harps have announced that winger Pascal Millien will be available for the second half of the season after finally obtaining a work permit – but won't be eligible to play for another month.
The Haiti international signed with Harps in early March but has endured a frustrating wait to find out if he'd be granted leave to work in what Harps secretary John Campbell described as “a saga.”
31-year-old Millien has previous experience in the League of Ireland, having helped Sligo Rovers to the Premier Division title in 2012, and underwent a trial with Cork City earlier this year.
As his eligibility will only be confirmed during the schedule mid-season break on June 5th, Millien will be in line to make his debut against Shamrock Rovers on June 16th – a full three months since signing.
“First it took a number of weeks to get him signed and after that we then had to apply to the Department of Labour for Pascal’s work permit back in the middle of March,” said Campbell.
“There were a lot of queries and hurdles that we had to clear to finally get the permit to allow him to play.
“The amount of work involved in this signing dwarfed any other that I ever worked in my time as Harps Secretary. There were 126 emails between myself and various agencies over the last eight weeks.
“It was just incredible the amount of back-up material that was required to get Pascal registered as a Harps player.
“While it was a long saga I would just like to thank those people behind the scenes who helped me because it could have taken even longer without them.”
“[Applying for a work permit is] money that has to be paid up front and is non-returnable even if the application fails.
“We’re just glad that we have been successful and that we now have Pascal for the second half of the season.”
Haiti-born Millien has spent the majority of his professional career in Florida after moving there as a teenager, lining out with FC Tampa Bay, Jacksonville Armada and most recently the Fort Lauderdale Strikers in the NASL.
He has also played in Bangladesh with Sheikh Russel KC, Thailand with Samut Songkhram and in Italy with Fidelis Andria.
Millien made his debut for Haiti in 2006 and has since gone on to win 26 caps, scoring once, and represented his country at the 2016 Copa America in the United States.