Johannes Yli-Kokko’s loan spell at the club came to an end last week as the midfielder returned to his parent club HJK Helsinki.

The 22-year-old became the first player from Finland to pull on a Dundalk shirt when he made a goalscoring debut against Bohemians at Dalymount Park back in February.

Yli-Kokko was due to stay until the end of the campaign but a niggling injury saw him return home last week.

“Johannes has been struggling with a pubic symphysis injury so we spoke to HJK Helsinki after the Shelbourne game and we said it’d be best off to go back to his parent club for him to get ready for next year,” explained Dundalk FC head coach Stephen O’Donnell.

Johannes made a total of 35 appearances for the Lilywhites, scoring three times in total, and was well-regarded by the club’s supporters for the effort he showed in every game.

“I would like to thank all of the players and staff for welcoming me in since day one and I would also like to say a big thanks to the Dundalk supporters,” he told

“It was a pleasure getting to know everybody in and around the club and to meet lots of great people in Dundalk.

“Looking back, I’m really happy that I made the decision to come on loan back in February. It was a good experience for me to come to a different country and adapt to a different style of football and I think it will help me a lot as a player going forward.

“Even though the season hasn’t quite gone the way we planned, there were many memorable moments, nights and games that I’ll cherish,” he added.

Yli-Kokko played in all four of Dundalk’s UEFA Europa Conference League qualifier this summer and he is hoping to see the Lilywhites back in European action next summer.

“It was disappointing having to end the season short but I hope the lads can come out on top from the last two games and we’ll see where that places us.”