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Ex-LOI and SPFL manager has ‘no doubt’ Shamrock Rovers and Dundalk would finish in the top-half of the SPFL

Kenny Shiels

How would Shamrock Rovers and Dundalk get on in Scotland?

Former Derry City, and ex-Scottish top-flight manager Kenny Shiels has claimed that League of Ireland sides Shamrock Rovers and Dundalk would easily finish in the top half of the Scottish top-flight.

Shiels managed the Candystripes for a three-year stint in the League of Ireland, and was formerly the manager of Kilmarnock.

But now the manager of the Northern Irish senior women’s side, the experienced manager has claimed that both Rovers, and Dundalk, would easily compete in the top-half of the Scottish top tier.

Kenny Shiels reveals the quality in the League of Ireland.

“When I was managing in that league with Derry City from 2015-18, the football was really good,” Shiels told the Daily Record.

In recent months, several Scottish clubs have swooped for talent in the League of Ireland, with Sligo Rovers forward Johnny Kenny being the latest name set for a cross-channel switch.

Johnny Kenny

“Celtic or Rangers would win the League of Ireland, but the football being played in Ireland is a much more modern type of game than any of the other Scottish clubs play,” he added.

“Liam Scales has done well in the games he’s had at Celtic but Aaron McEneff at Hearts, for instance, could walk into that Celtic team and not feel out of place – but he would struggle to play for the likes of Ross County..

“There are players there, because of the quality of their own league, who would represent great value for money for Scottish clubs in terms of transfer fees and wages.”

And Kenny is not the only one, of course. Liam Scales made the switch to Celtic last summer, while Ireland U21 Ross Tierney joined Motherwell in November.

“I’m not going to name names because that wouldn’t be fair on their clubs but they are out there playing really good football every week.

“Teams like Shamrock Rovers and Dundalk would finish in the top half of the Scottish Premiership. I have no doubt about that whatsoever.

“Their methodology about the game is probably more advanced than most, if you take the Old Firm out of it.”

League of Ireland.

Shiels’ comments, however, come as no major surprise, especially given his association with the domestic game.

While in charge of Derry City, Shiels led the Foylesiders to Europe, and also won an EA Sports Cup while at the Ryan McBride Brandywell Stadium.

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