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Shane Duffy Rubbishes Notion He Can't Play In Possession Focused Teams

Shane Duffy Rubbishes Notion He Can't Play In Possession Focused Teams
By Gary Connaughton

One of the more welcome developments from the early stages of the new season has been Shane Duffy's apparent resurgence at Brighton.

Many felt that his career at the club was over when he joined Celtic on loan last year, and considering his poor form while in Glasgow, it seemed unlikely that he had a future under Graham Potter when he returned over the summer for pre-season training.

However, it was a welcome surprise to see the Derry man in the starting XI for their Premier League opener against Burnley last weekend. What's more, he would go on to earn man-of-the-match honours as Brighton secured a 2-1 victory at Turf Moor.

This would have been welcome news for Stephen Kenny ahead of Ireland's World Cup qualifiers next month. Duffy has been a key figure for Ireland in the past, but had seemingly dropped down the pecking order as a result of his poor form at Celtic.

Many had written off his chances of regaining a place in the side. Much like at Brighton under Graham Potter, he seemed a bit of an odd fit in a Stephen Kenny team that wanted to pass the ball out from the back.

The player himself believes this narrative is wide of the mark.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Shane Duffy said that he is more than capable of slotting into Brighton's back three despite their philosophy of playing the ball out of the defence.


Everyone thinks Brighton's back three just have to carry the ball and don't defend, but it's not like that at all. I'm confident in my ability, I can play out as well, I might not be Franz Beckenbauer running out, but not many are.

I've got strengths I can bring to the team for certain games, I'm always trying to improve and learn, and develop.

Not a lot of people see day-to-day training. Looking at Dan [Burn], we know how good he is on the ball, you might not see it on a Saturday, but we know and the manager sees it every day.

It's probably similar with me, the manager sees it and the players trust it. The manager's very open, he likes to mix and match it sometimes, and if he trusts you, he plays you.

There might be some games where I'm not needed and some where I am, and I'm totally fine with that.

Ireland flirted with a back three during the March international window, something that Stephen Kenny could return to ahead of the game against Portugal on September 1st.


By then, he would be hoping that Shane Duffy has proven how comfortable he can be in such a system.

SEE ALSO: With International Return On The Horizon, Ireland's Young Blood Is Coming To The Fore

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