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  • Young Celt on target for Ireland U18s in Spanish tournament

    Young Celt on target for Ireland U18s in Spanish tournament

    By: Tony Connelly on 16 Nov, 2018 09:41

  • YOUNG Celtic midfielder, Barry Coffey, not only captained the Republic of Ireland Under-18 side to a 2-1 win over Belgium in Pinatar on Thursday, he also set them on the road to victory by scoring the first goal of the game.

    The Irish youngsters are taking part in a four-team mini tournament in Spain with the Netherlands and England, who drew 2-2 in their opening game, and Coffey is set to lead his team-mates out against the English in their next game on Saturday.

    The Celtic View caught up with the youngster for this week’s issue and explains how it was a dream come true for the highly-rated youngster when he signed for Celtic just over a year ago, and now the Irish midfielder is hoping to make an impact in Tommy McIntyre’s Reserve side. He came on from the bench in last week’s SPFL Reserve Cup 2-1 win over Falkirk.

    “It was great to get the minutes in,” Coffey told the View. “We were 2-1 up and trying to see the game out so I was happy to come on, play my part and help us get the three points.

    “It’s been a really good season so far. Since the start of pre-season I’ve been feeling great and I’m in good shape. I have a good few games in the Reserves under my belt. I’m trying to push on to the starting XI of the Reserve team now and get a place for myself.”

    WHERE DO YOU HAIL FROM?
    I’m from a small town in County Tipperary called Nenagh. It’s grand. I was born and raised there and I head back when I can to see my family.

    WHAT POSITION DO YOU PLAY?
    I play as a central-defensive midfielder. I like to get forward too, but I’m mainly in front of the back four. I was more of a box-to-box player at my old club back home, but since coming to Celtic I’ve been playing mainly as a deep-lying midfielder.  

    HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN PART OF THE ACADEMY FOR?
    This is my second season at Celtic so it’s been around 15 months since I signed from Nenagh FC.

    WHAT ARE YOUR MAIN STRENGTHS AS A PLAYER?
    Tackling and winning the ball back is something I’m effective at. Seeing danger and intercepting passes is something I feel I’m quite god at.

    WHAT AREAS OF YOUR GAME ARE YOU LOOKING TO IMPROVE ON?
    There are always areas I’m working on. At the moment I’m trying to improve my left foot, my strength and get more familiar with that pocket in front of the back four so I can run the game from that position.

    CAREER HIGHLIGHT SO FAR?
    Scoring for my country was a big one. That was in the Victory Shield at Under-16 level. The major one, though, is signing for Celtic.

    WHAT’S NEXT ON THE AGENDA?
    In football, you never know what’s around the corner, so right now I’m trying to get a place in the Reserves. I’m trying to get better every day so that goal is keeping me busy.

    GREATEST INFLUENCE?
    My family are my greatest influence. My Dad and brother have come to a lot of my games. I’ve been driven up and down the country by my family so I owe them a lot. They’ve been there to help me every step of the way.

    FOOTBALL IDOL?
    Roy Keane without a shadow of doubt. He was the man. I play in a similar position so he’s been an idol of mine for a long time.

    CELTIC IDOL?
    Callum McGregor. At this moment in time he’s a phenomenal player. The way he goes about games is really impressive. He’s a top player.

    For the full interview with Barry Coffey, see this week’s Celtic View. Out Now.

    To download a digital version of the View, click on the banner below.

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