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Mammy's little Bhoy: Shane Duffy signs for boyhood club Celtic just months after father's death


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Shane Duffy after scoring the injury-time equaliser in Ireland’s match against Bulgaria on Thursday

Shane Duffy after scoring the injury-time equaliser in Ireland’s match against Bulgaria on Thursday

AP

Siobhan Duffy celebrates her son’s move to Celtic at her home in Derry this week

Siobhan Duffy celebrates her son’s move to Celtic at her home in Derry this week

Siobhan Duffy

Siobhan Duffy

Siobhan Duffy

Siobhan Duffy

Shane with dad Brian, who died in May aged just 53

Shane with dad Brian, who died in May aged just 53

Siobhan with Shane at an Ireland game

Siobhan with Shane at an Ireland game

Shane as a Celt

Shane as a Celt

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Shane Duffy after scoring the injury-time equaliser in Ireland’s match against Bulgaria on Thursday

SOCCER star Shane Duffy's father will be dancing in heaven with delight after he signed for Celtic, his mother told the Sunday World.

Siobhan Duffy revealed how Republic of Ireland skipper Shane rang her for advice when weighing up the Celtic offer.

And she told him: "I just said, Shane your dad isn't here, so you will just have to make that decision yourself.

"But he said 'mum, I've decided to sign for Celtic'.

"I said, 'Shane, your dad will be dancing in heaven with delight right now. He will be looking down on you and he will be so proud, as is the whole family'."

Shane's dad Brian tragically died from a massive heart attack three months ago aged just 53.

Siobhan said she was overcome with excitement when Shane phoned her.

She said: "I didn't really interfere with Shane's football. All I did was give him a hard time!

"It was his daddy who was from Donegal who guided him through all the big decisions in his football career. Shane and his daddy were joined at the hip."

She added: "Brian would have been so proud of Shane signing for Celtic."

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Shane with dad Brian, who died in May aged just 53

Shane with dad Brian, who died in May aged just 53

Shane with dad Brian, who died in May aged just 53

In an Instagram post after his father's death, Shane wrote: "You weren't just my dad, you were my hero, my idol. I'll miss ringing you after the match and you telling me how sh*te I was. Daddy, I love you and miss you. Look after us all now."

Siobhan added: "Apparently it was down to West Ham United and Celtic, but Shane chose Celtic.

"Celtic were Shane's heroes when he was a wee boy, so he's fulfilling a boyhood dream by playing for them."

Siobhan also revealed she had never even seen Celtic play - but that's about to change in the near future.

Paradise

Her footballer son is destined for soccer stardom in Paradise and she intends to witness it herself.

The 28-year-old defender joined the Glasgow giants this week on a year-long loan deal from Premier League side Brighton and Hove Albion.

And if everything goes well and the Hoops manage to clinch the magical 10-in-a-row league titles, then Celtic boss Neil Lennon has an option to make the move permanent.

Speaking from her home in the Waterside district of Derry, Siobhan (49) said she was looking forward to making her own debut at Celtic Park along with Shane's older sister Nicole (30) and his younger brother Tony (26).

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Siobhan Duffy celebrates her son’s move to Celtic at her home in Derry this week

Siobhan Duffy celebrates her son’s move to Celtic at her home in Derry this week

Siobhan Duffy celebrates her son’s move to Celtic at her home in Derry this week

"I've never even seen play Celtic apart from on the TV. But I've got family in Glasgow and they are all excited as well. I'm really looking forward to visiting Celtic Park.

"They're all out at the minute getting new tattoos with Shane's image and Free Derry Corner in it," revealed Siobhan.

She added: "The whole of Derry is also buzzing about Shane signing for Celtic. It seems everyone in the city is talking about it."

But Siobhan also paused to remember the difficulties Shane faced when his football career almost came to an end.

"It was 10 years ago now when Shane was seriously injured in a training match. He clashed with the goalkeeper in a freak accident and the collision lacerated his liver and he lost three litres of blood.

"We very nearly lost Shane, it was an awful time.

"But the surgeons did a marvellous job and we can't thank them enough for what they did for him," said Siobhan.

Shane himself thanks the medical team at Dublin's Mater Hospital for saving his life.

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Siobhan with Shane at an Ireland game

Siobhan with Shane at an Ireland game

Siobhan with Shane at an Ireland game

The then 18-year-old said: "I can't thank them enough. I've thanked them so many times and I'll thank them again for being so good at their jobs and saving me.

"It's made me realise how important it is now to get a second chance at it. I can't describe it, that I'm still here.

Squad

"I'm just so happy. It's hard to tell people what it feels like because no one else knows I nearly died. So I just have to live life now, and don't take anything for granted."

Mum Siobhan added: "It wasn't always easy for Shane, but signing for Celtic is the highlight of his career so far and we are all thrilled for him."

Before he heads to Glasgow to join the rest of Neil Lennon's squad, Shane will take his place alongside his Republic of Ireland teammates today in a Nations League match against Finland in Dublin.

Irish Independent