RYAN CHRISTIE has hailed the coaching quality of Damien Duff and is not surprised at his Republic of Ireland international call-up.
The Hoops assistant, with just over a year in Neil Lennon’s backroom team, has been rewarded for his hard work with a place in Stephen Kenny’s new line-up after the former Dunfermline gaffer took over from ex-Celt Mick McCarthy last month.
Duff has made a huge impact with the players since being handed extra responsibility following the exit of Brendan Rodgers and his assistants in February 2019 that opened the door for Lennon to work with John Kennedy and the one-time Chelsea, Fulham and Blackburn Rovers winger.
Scotland international playmaker Christie is clearly a fan of the Irish legend, who won 100 caps for his country in a glittering playing career, and told the Daily Record: “It’s no surprise to me that he’s been added to the Republic of Ireland coaching staff.
THREE AMIGOS…Damien Duff, John Kennedy and Neil Lennon.
“Just being around him and listening to his stories, you realise what a massive career he had.
“We all know he played at an elite level and it’s been invaluable to have someone like him to learn from.
“I do remember watching Duffer play. The game that stands out in my mind is France one when Thierry Henry handled the ball before the goal.
“I can also recall him playing in that successful Chelsea team, even though I was a Manchester United fan. He played alongside world-class players and his stories are brilliant.
“When he’s giving advice, everyone listens as he’s played at the very highest level. Duffer is also very clear in getting his point across and we all understand what he wants.
“We are very lucky to have the gaffer, John Kennedy and Duffer coaching us.”