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In an exclusive interview for Between the Stripes, current Irish Under-21 International Danny Kane got chatting on the phone with our very own @AndrewDempsey2 to discuss his motives for joining up with John Caulfield at Cork City, as well as looking back on his time learning the crafts of his trade at current Premier League side Huddersfield Town, whilst also looking ahead to a very positive 2018 in on Leeside.
Having joined Huddersfield Town after completing the Junior Certificate back in 2013, the former Cherry Orchard youngster explained his decision-making process to pack in his footballing adventure across the water and get going on the senior football scene back in Ireland, having excelled at the underage grades over in England.
“Basically, I was playing 23’s football for a while and I just felt that I was playing at that level for just a bit too long. I just turned 20 so I needed to either go out on loan or just come home. I knew that Cork City were interested in me, so I decided to come home, and I think it has been a good move for me to take that next step into men’s football if you know what I mean.”
Asked on whether or not he believes that attitudes from younger Irish players like himself in England are changing towards the League of Ireland, Kane admits that should he have been able to foresee a positive outlook on the League back when he decided to make the move over to Huddersfield he arguably would have stayed at home having seen the successes of both Ryan Delaney and Andy Boyle in the League of Ireland.
“There’s a few young lads here at Cork and I’ve seen a lot of them playing so far. They’ve played a lot more Airtricity League games than me and I’m looking at them with more experience than me even though I’ve been over in England if you get me (at men’s football). It’s a whole different ball game to 23’s football, men’s football is. I wouldn’t be as fussed anymore to go over to England right after the Junior Cert. I don’t regret going over by any means, but I just see there’s a lot more ways now playing in the League of Ireland and then going over when you’re 22 or 23 with the hunger that you’ve never been over there before.”
Kane also added that he always used to look at the way in which all the defenders at Huddersfield Town based their games around and began to use that as a source of inspiration whilst at the Terriers, instead of looking at one certain player the whole time.
“I always looked at the defenders when I was at the games over in Huddersfield and I used to be looking at it thinking, what would I do if I was there. Obviously, people moved on a lot of the time when I was there. There wasn’t an awful lot of Irish there to be fair, Joe Murphy was there which was good as he talked to me for a bit. He was there for two or three years and gave me little bits and pieces of advice here and there but that was it really. There was a lot of foreign boys there keeping themselves to themselves.”
However, looking ahead at least, the current Irish Under-21 International believes that he is now only getting used to the pace of the League of Ireland after admitting that he was taken aback by the standard of play since his initial arrival at the club in January.
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“Yeah it’s been good so far. I’ve been here one or two months now at this stage and am starting to get used to the pace now and the step-up here. I didn’t realise how good they were when I came, so I’m getting used to it now and hopefully I can break into the team soon enough!”
After making his Irish Under-21 debut in March of 2017 against Kosovo, Kane looks to that moment as the real moment that stands out to him in his early professional career so far.
“Obviously, I’ve played for Ireland for a bit so that would be the main highlight in my career so far. It’s a big deal for me playing for my country, especially after growing up and watching the senior team, so it would have to be when I made my Under 21 debut for Ireland.”
Asked on how he feels he has adapted to life in the League of Ireland so far, Kane believes that his experience in living away from home prior to his move to Leeside has benefited his cause greatly.
“I’m used to living away from Dublin, so I’m used to that part of it and I just want a taste of first-team football now.
With Cork City beginning their title defence in blistering fashion so far, Kane really does believe that this City side can replicate their famous double of last season, as well as having a strong showing in the Champions League Qualifiers during the summer months.
“It’s going to be difficult to replicate what they done last year but that’s what we’re aiming for. We’re well capable of doing it! As a team, we are more than able to do the double again and maybe do well in Europe in the first and second stages and let’s see where that can bring us! Personally, I just want to break into the team and make as many appearances as I can this season.”