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Uncertain times ahead for Irish players as chunky pre-Covid contracts may no longer be there

Aidan Fitzmaurice


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GOING: Jonny Hayes has been released by Celtic. Photo: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

GOING: Jonny Hayes has been released by Celtic. Photo: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

PA

GOING: Jonny Hayes has been released by Celtic. Photo: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

Shane Long remains a Saint but Jonny Hayes is no longer one of the Bhoys. And Dubliner Hayes is slowly finding out that being a footballer in your 30s without a contract in the Covid-19 age is no picnic.

There is some comfort for footballers over the age of 30 in the fact that contracts are still being handed out, with Southampton signing Long (33) for another two-year stint.

Many Celtic fans are surprised that the club announced last week that Hayes (32) would leave the club, having won a third successive league title with Neil Lennon's side.