"Getting ridiculous"; Celtic fan relief as Shane Duffy avoids Ireland test drama

By David Walton

October 11, 2020

Today’s latest self-isolation concern has clearly led to Celtic fans having had enough of the international break.

The Republic of Ireland announced on Twitter earlier that one of their players had tested positive for the virus. As well as that, a further four were identified as close contacts, meaning five had to self-isolate.

Whilst the four close contacts were mentioned in Ireland’s statement, there were question marks over who the positive-testing player was. Given John Egan was one of those close contacts, there was a natural fear that centre-back partner Duffy was the player. However, Ireland’s captain started and played 90 minutes of the game against Wales this afternoon – ruling him out.

Shane Duffy played 90 minutes against Wales (Photo By Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

This comes after Nir Bitton and Odsonne Edouard had tested positive for the virus over the last week, whilst Ryan Christie was also forced to self-isolate after being identified as a close contact of positive-testing Stuart Armstrong.

And it appears some fans have simply had enough. Once again reiterating their frustration towards international football, here’s a look at some of the Celtic fans’ reaction to today’s relieving news:

https://twitter.com/keirahaughian/status/1315253374640705537

Important to remember that Celtic can’t be blamed

When it comes to international football, it’s really important that we don’t really go in on the club here. Unfortunately, it’s just not within Celtic’s powers to stop players from playing in internationals.

FIFA’s Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players states that clubs simply must allow their players to be available for their country (Annexe 1, page 32). If Celtic were to halt this, they would be in breach of official FIFA ruling. Goodness knows what punishment they would dish out if the club did that.

Whether international football should continue to go ahead is a totally different argument as opposed to who is to blame. We can all agree that players shouldn’t be allowed to jot around Europe for fixtures which could easily be postponed and halted for the time being. If we have to change the international calendar permanently and move tournaments back, it must continue to be done. International travel just isn’t safe.

Duffy impressed again today (Photo By Seb Daly/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

But from a Celtic perspective, we’re certainly having it worse than our rivals ahead of Saturday’s mouth-watering clash against Rangers at Parkhead. Having Christie and Bitton already out is bad enough, with Edouard as big a doubt as could possibly be.

If we have another first-team regular joining them then it must be a huge concern for Neil Lennon, especially in a position where we already have a player missing.

You have to question why, after players have tested positive, their camp carries on as normal and they continue to take part in international travel. It’s totally bewildering and belittles the safety message attached to these rules.

Today’s scare over Duffy wasn’t just worrying, it was tiresome. The Celtic supporters are getting fed up, and we won’t be the only ones.

In other news, a left-back Celtic reportedly held talks with this summer is interesting Championship clubs.