Shay Given talks what's next for him after Stoke exit

Former Ireland No 1 talks playing future and coaching ambitions after being released by Potters

BY Raf Diallo 19:35 Friday 26 May 2017, 19:35 26 May 2017

Stoke City goalkeeper Shay Given during warm up. Richard Sellers/EMPICS Sport

Ireland goalkeeping great Shay Given is hopeful to maintain his playing career after being released by Stoke City.

The former Ireland goalkeeper is now 41 and the Donegal man now faces a career crossroads as he reaches the twilight of his career.

Speaking to Off The Ball on Friday, Given discussed his intentions as well as coaching ambitions. 

"Obviously my contract's not being renewed at Stoke so I've got a decision to make about what's the next step," he said.

"To be honest, I feel good, I feel fit so I'd like to play on for another season and weigh it up against next summer but I know I'm coming to the end of my career obviously but I still feel I've got something to offer." 

In terms of the level he would remain playing at if possible, Given sees the Championship as one he could potentially drop down to.

"I would drop to the Championship, I definitely would. I wouldn't probably drop any lower than that if I'm being honest," he said, adding that it's unlikely that he would consider any levels below that. 

Given, who won 134 caps for Ireland in a 20 year international career, also talked about the difficulties of getting onto the coaching ladder, having got as far as his UEFA A Licence.

"There's a lot of politics behind the scenes at different football clubs. A friend of a friend or an agent of a friend and the next thing he's got a job. It's sometimes who you know in football behind the scenes and what chairmen you know or chief executives and stuff that can get you into some places. I suppose, you just want that opportunity but then they say you've got no experience. And then how do you get the experience - by giving you a job. So it's like a vicious circle really," he said.

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