Alan Stubbs predicted a bright future for Shane Duffy when he arrived at Parkhead on loan from Brighton in September.
The former Celtic centre-half had been Duffy’s youth- team coach at Everton and was convinced the Republic of Ireland captain was the ideal man to bolster Neil Lennon’s back four and help the Hoops claim a record 10th successive title.
Unfortunately, after a false dawn, the 29-year-old has gone from bad to worse and has been kept out of the team in recent weeks by young Stephen Welsh.
Stubbs believes that the problem with Duffy has been that he’s been trying to do too much.
The Cork-born centre-back had hoped to impress enough to earn a permanent move to his heroes but Stubbs reckons that ship has sailed.
“I’d be very surprised if he gets that chance,” he said.
“There are going to be wholesale changes and that’s started with Peter Lawwell and Neil Lennon leaving – the fact that the incoming chief executive, Dominic McKay, hadn’t bothered to contact Neil before he resigned on Tuesday told its own story.
“With Shane, though, I think there’s an element of caring too much and trying too hard, which worked against him.
“All of his family are Celtic diehards as well but the biggest pressure comes from within. Shane would have desperately wanted this to be a success.
“It’s been a horrendous experience for Shane. That’s not what he came to the club for.
“He signed so that he could play regularly after being left out of the picture at Brighton and, at first, everyone looked upon it as a really positive move for Celtic and for him.
“Scoring in each of his first two games helped as well but, ultimately, it hasn’t really happened for him and there’s no point in me trying to say otherwise.
“I know Shane personally, having coached him when he was starting out. He’s a great lad and he has all the attributes – he’s big and strong, which is what you want from your centre-backs.
“But he’s looked vulnerable and confused and he started to over-think things because of the mistakes that he’d made.
“When that happens you try to do different things to show what a player you are rather than sticking to what you’re good at.
“If I’d been his manager I would have stripped everything right back to basics because he was doing things during matches which were baffling.
“There was one game where he’d been at fault for a goal and, minutes later, he was trying to do a Cruyff turn on the edge of his own box and that’s just not Shane.
“But that’s what mistakes and a lack of confidence do to you – they start to mess with your mind and, certainly right now, that’s what Shane is going through.
“Only he can pull himself out of this. In fairness, he’s not the only one not performing. It’s been a problem for him because the team hasn’t been in great form and results haven’t been good enough.
“He’s come to Celtic in what is going to be their worst season in 10 years and that doesn’t look great. This was a huge campaign and one which offered so much hope before it had started.
“What they achieved beforehand – nine-in-a-row and the quadruple Treble, which will probably never be equalled – was incredible, but the Holy Grail was the 10 and that’s gone.
“Rangers have been good but they’ve not been brilliant. However, they’ve answered the questions asked of them while Celtic haven’t answered any.”
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