John Joe Nevin & Niall Horan pictured in Mullingar on Monday
One Direction star Niall Horan made a special trip home to Ireland on Monday for Olympic winner John Joe Nevin’s homecoming in Mullingar.

The popstar made the trip back to his hometown after performing alongside his band members at the Olympic Games closing ceremony on Sunday night.

"I wasn't going to come home at all, but I had to be here,” Horan told the Irish Independent.

Horan said he has followed Nevin’s progress throughout the games.

“I was at three of his fights. It was the only thing I was at. He is such a legend," Horan said.

"I grew up across the road from him. I've known him all my life," he added.

Thousands lined the streets of Mullingar on Monday for the silver medalist’s homecoming. Nevin and Irish equestrian Olympian Joseph Murphy travelled through the town on an open top bus before they arrived at Cusack Park, the GAA ground of the town.

Nevin revealed he has not let his silver medal out of his sight since he won it.

"I have slept with it," he laughed.

Niall Horan welcomes home John Joe Nevin