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Watch: Jack Charlton's Engaging Analysis Of Damien Duff In His Prime

PJ Browne
By PJ Browne
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"I love him as a player, I wish to hell he'd been with me" laments Jack Charlton as he concludes discussing Damien Duff's prowess on the pitch. Charlton's reign as manager and Duff's senior Ireland career missed coinciding by 16 months.


Charlton's appreciation of Duff's abilities is clear. He particularly adored the winger's close control.

You can't beat a player like Damien, who wants the ball and wants to take it at people. I used to say with one or two of the players that we had as wingers, 'When you've got the ball and you run at somebody, knock the ball past them and run' but with Damien you wouldn't want that.

He's a very tight controller. He changes direction like nobody I've ever seen before. He's very good at just making his way between players.

You've got so many problems to solve with Damien, he's capable of wandering about and doing things through the middle. Sometimes he'll even wander out on to the right-hand side and come in on his left foot.

He's the sort of player you can never adjudicate on what he's going to do next. Whether he's going to go past you, whether he's going to go inside you, whether he's going to overlap you, whether he's going to run through players for a ball, you never know with Damien.

This clip isn't just about Charlton's analysis of Duff, it also has the added bonus of some special goals from the 100-cap Ireland international, especially from his prime with both Blackburn and Chelsea. The one at 1:40 against Liverpool is particularly Messi-esque.


Read: The Claudio Ranieri Story That Shows Just How Great Damien Duff Was At His Peak

Read: How Ireland Collapsed In The Final Few Months Of Jack Charlton's Reign


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