Football

Shane Duffy's Loan Spell At Celtic Has Been Cut Short, So What Now?

Shane Duffy's Loan Spell At Celtic Has Been Cut Short, So What Now?

Shane Duffy has had the season from hell.

Many criticised his decision to move to Celtic on loan last summer, believing that the Scottish Premiership was too big of a drop down for a player who had previously been performing at a high level in the Premier League.

As it turns out, Duffy would struggle greatly after his move north of the border. His form was patchy at best in the early portion of the season, eventually descending into a very concerning string of poor performances.

Ultimately, he was taken out of the Celtic side. Barring a couple of appearances here and there, he never really got another look in.

Duffy has not played for the club since February, last being part of the matchday squad in late March. He has been absent since returning from international duty with Ireland, with his time in Glasgow now cut short.

The player would have been unavailable for Celtic's last two games of the season, with the club opting to let him return to Brighton ahead of schedule according to the Daily Record.

While only a temporary switch, this has been a costly deal for Celtic. They reportedly paid a loan fee of £2million and covered all of Duffy's £30,000 per-week wages.

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It also coincided with their capitulation in the league. While not Duffy's fault, his signing will always be associated with the club's failure to win a historic tenth consecutive league title.

It has arguably been even more costly for the player.

Shane Duffy

This time last year, Duffy could have had his pick of Premier League clubs. He was pursued by the likes of West Ham and Newcastle last summer, instead opting to move to the club he supported growing up.

That is an understandable decision, but nine months on, he is paying the price for it.

Duffy has already lost his place in the Ireland team thanks to his lack of form, and with Celtic surely unwilling to make the transfer a permanent one in the coming weeks, it is difficult to see where he goes from here.

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He should have plenty left in the tank at 29-years old. However, he does not seem to have a place at Brighton under Graham Potter. You would also think it unlikely that a Premier League club would consider him this summer.

A move to the Championship is most likely. While that may be no bad thing at this stage, it is not something you would have considered possible a couple of years ago considering his form for club and country.

One thing that is for certain is that Duffy needs to choose his next career move very wisely. The transfer to Celtic, one that seemed to make little sense at the time, has set his career back by a number of years. Another similar setback could all but end his career at the top level.

If he is to return to the player he was a couple of seasons ago, he now needs to find the right fit.

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Gary Connaughton

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