Shane Duffy's latest transfer story reflects how little Irish players are valued 7 years ago

Shane Duffy's latest transfer story reflects how little Irish players are valued

"Bravery. Courage. We need to see that in the next two days."

Roy Keane asked. Shane Duffy delivered.

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If they had any chance of beating Italy, and advancing to the Euro 2016 knock-out stages, Ireland needed to be tight at the back. They needed bravery and courage.

The bravery to put his head, boot, torso, everything in where it hurt. The courage to charge out of defence, to mix it with Champions League and World Cup winners for possession, to call the ball to himself. His performance in that 1-0 win was not perfect but it wasn't far off.

We hailed him after that victory and sang his praises when he thwarted France in a pulsating first half, in Lyon. He would not be one of Euro 2016's biggest heroes, though. A kamikaze aerial assault on an upfield punt and a lunge that prevented an Antoine Griezmann hat-trick saw to that.

He was gutted after Ireland's exit but fronted up and faced the media in the post-match mixed zone. He told us:

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"I felt like I could play at this level. I feel like I've done alright... I'll hold my head up high, learn from my mistakes and try to do better next time."

Shane Duffy 25/3/2016

Duffy has since been linked with a host of clubs. Celtic, Swansea and Crystal Palace were first, the latest is Wolves.

Wolverhampton Wanderers. Swapping the team [Blackburn] that finished 15th in the Championship for the side that finished 14th. Duffy is better than that. Much better.

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The mooted fees for Duffy have been just as risible. £2m, loan or £3m, take your pick. Blackburn will take none if Owen Coyle has his way. This lad is 24 years old, had a stormer last season, proved himself and the Euros and will be one of Ireland's starting centre backs for the World Cup Qualifiers.

In a world where Liverpool squad player Jordon Ibe gets sold for £15m and John Stones, who could not get into the worse England defence in recent memory, is set for a £50m move to Manchester City, Duffy is worth a heap more. In fact, nearly every Irish player linked with a move is being undervalued.

Jeff Hendrick £2m: (linked with - Burnley, Palace, Fulham, Middlesbrough, Hull City, Galatasaray)

Robbie Brady £10-£12m: (Leicester City, Everton, Hull City)

Shane Long £12m: (Liverpool)

Darren Randolph £2m (Everton, Watford, Bournemouth)

Premier League sides will share in £5.1bn [billion!] since the latest TV rights deal was confirmed, earlier this year. The league may not be Europe's standard bearer any more - Spain, Italy and Germany have bypassed it - but it is raking in the money. Every club is benefiting and transfer fees are shooting up.

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All this and yet Jeff Hendrick and Shane Duffy are appearing in newspaper reports as £2m transfer targets. The English press is hyping up their own [Raheem Sterling, Stones, Harry Kane...] then tearing them down when they fail.

Our lads came into Euro 2016 off the radar. They are there now but mere flecks while the Zeppelins float obesely on.

If Matt Damon can sign for Atletico Madrid, why not Shane Duffy?

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Why the hell not?!

SNAPCHAT