Wednesday 21 February 2018

Duffy looking ahead after injury

Shane Duffy made 39 appearances for Yeovil this season
Shane Duffy made 39 appearances for Yeovil this season

Shane Duffy is refusing to dwell on the football injury which almost cost him his life.

The then teenager suffered a lacerated liver in a collision during a practice match with the Republic of Ireland in May 2010 which left him needing emergency surgery.

Four years on, the Everton defender, now 22, is back on duty with his national squad and looking ahead, rather than backwards.

He told the Irish Independent: "That could have been it for me. I can remember it like yesterday, although it's only when I'm asked about it. I don't think about it any more.

"It's great to be here and able to look back and talk about it, but I can't be thinking about it either.

"The kind of player I am, I have to go and attack stuff. I've clattered into a few keepers this year and it's been no problem."

Duffy had been called into the senior squad by then manager Giovanni Trapattoni and had been promised a first senior cap in a friendly against Paraguay in Dublin.

However, he found himself at the heart of a desperate dash to Dublin's Mater Hospital after a collision during a match between players from Trapattoni's squad and the country's best amateurs.

Indeed, only the prompt actions of team surgeon Professor John O'Byrne and team doctor Alan Byrne, who were in attendance, prevented a tragedy.

Duffy was back on his feet within days and played again just 13 weeks later, but he admits it has taken him time to re-adjust as a result of the experience.

Duffy, who spent last season on loan at Sky Bet Championship Yeovil, said: "I didn't ever want to say it, but I just wasn't the same player when I first came back.

"I can't quite put my finger on it, but I was just doing things differently."

Duffy was an unused substitute in Sunday evening's 2-1 home defeat by Turkey, but will hope for a first cap as Ireland face Italy, Costa Rica and Portugal over the next two weeks.

Press Association

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