Former Scotland manager Alex McLeish believes that Celtic defender Shane Duffy is one of the main reasons why Neil Lennon’s side are way below par this season.
Duffy in the spotlight again
While events surrounding Dubai have been an obvious talking point, Celtic are also way off the pace in the Scottish Premiership and look certain to miss out in 10-in-a-row.
Speaking before Celtic’s 2-2 draw to Livingston on Wednesday night, McLeish picked out Duffy and his inability to play in Lennon’s system as a reason why they’ve been so poor.
He told Football Insider: “I think that has been a factor, definitely, because analysing, from my own point of view, his Brighton career, he was defending a lot and he was a real stalwart defender, that was a lot of his game.
“When you’re going to Celtic, you’re going to be in a team that has a lot of the ball and you have to use the ball so it is a little bit of a different type of football for Shane to adapt to but he’s no mug, he can pass the ball.
“He would expect teams to be on top of him all the time and defending a lot more than he is doing in the games, instead of attacking and then finding himself maybe a little bit vulnerable at the halfway line when a ball over the top could harm you.”
Transfer Tavern Verdict
It has been a season to forget for Duffy – let alone Celtic. But it seems as though McLeish’s comments are just as much aimed at transfer chief Nick Hammond.
As McLeish points out, Duffy is used to being the team without the ball for large periods having played on a relegation-battling side in the Premier League, so bringing him in as the major defensive signing for a team who boast an average of 66.1% possession is bizarre. By comparison, Brighton stand at just 51.6%.
Duffy has been “vulnerable” as a result, and the Hoops are paying the price.
Click here to comment on this articleor
Give us feedback on your Football Transfer Tavern experience