Brighton boss Graham Potter sends warning to Celtic on Shane Duffy loan agreement

Brighton and Hove Albion head coach Graham Potter fully expects Shane Duffy to see out the entirety of his season long loan with Scottish Champions Celtic

Thursday, 10th December 2020, 3:49 pm
Updated Thursday, 10th December 2020, 3:50 pm
Shane Duffy agreed to a season long loan at Celtic

Duffy has struggled to find his best form since joining the Scottish champions on loan from the Seagulls in September.

The Ireland international defender has been unable to establish himself in Neil Lennon's team and hasn’t made the starting XI since the 4-1 defeat to Sparta Prague in the Europa League last month.

It has prompted suggestions that the 28-year-old, who is contracted with Brighton until June 2023, could cut short his loan arrangement and return south of the border.

Potter accepts it has been a challenging time for his defender but fully expects him to prove the doubters at Parkhead wrong.

"It’s a season long loan," said Potter. "That’s how it has been from the start, that’s how we see it. In the season you’re going to get ups and downs.

"It’s a bit of a challenging situation, but knowing Shane he is a fighter and he’s a good character.

"He will come through and has something to prove. I am sure he will get back to being the player he will want to be and everyone knows he can be."

The fact Steven Gerrard's Rangers are 13 points ahead of Celtic has not made it easy for Duffy to settle.

Lennon's men have been far from their best this season as they bid to win a record 10th successive league title.

Lennon's position is under severe pressure and has not been helped by arrests and protests outside the stadium.

Former Celtic and Liverpool defender Gary Gillespie added: “I thought Shane was an ideal fit for Celtic when he joined them, but he has struggled.

"Still, he is a seasoned pro and seems to me to be a good lad. Fingers crossed it will turn around for him.

“It isn’t easy. If you are winning football matches and beating Rangers you will be fine, but if you aren’t doing that people will point the finger and look for scapegoats.

"Shane has come under that microscope a little bit.”