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Duffy signs for Blackburn to ends his days at Everton

IRELAND international Shane Duffy has sealed a move away from Everton and will drop down into the Championship to kick-start his club career in a £1.5million transfer to Blackburn Rovers.

Duffy, 22, has been at Everton since he was 16 and made his debut for the Toffees back in 2009. But he has struggled to get first-team games for the Goodison Park outfit and has now signed for Blackburn on a three year deal, Duffy expected to be on the bench for today's clash with Wolves.

The Derry native, who made his senior international debut for the Republic in the summer tour of the USA, made just 10 appearances for the Blues and got most of his first-team experience in loan spells with Burnley, Scunthorpe and Yeovil Town.

Duffy was much sought-after at international level as he was on the bench for the Northern Ireland senior side as a teenager, but he was recruited to the Republic's set up and won 20 caps at U21 level.

Initially promoted to the senior squad under Giovanni Trapattoni he had to wait until last June for his first senior cap as the lack of first-team opportunities saw him move down the ladder as players like Richard Keogh got an opportunity.

Blackburn are fourth in the Championship table after four games but boss Gary Bowyer is keen to add some steel to his defence and Duffy fits the bill.