Highlights on Off The Ball

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Highlights on Off The Ball

"If it wasn't for someone else's blood, I wouldn't be here" - Shane Duffy

"Without the Mater and Gerry McEntee who did the surgery, [Shane Duffy] would have died. He bled ...


"If it wasn't for someone else's blood, I wouldn't be here" - Shane Duffy

"Without the Mater and Gerry McEntee who did the surgery, [Shane Duffy] would have died. He bled three and a half litres into his abdomen."

That was an anecdote Ireland soccer team doctor Alan Byrne shared with us in January.

Ireland defender Shane Duffy had suffered a freak injury during a 2010 training match. The Brighton player's liver was damaged and left him requiring emergency surgery.

The impact of those events taught Duffy about the importance of donating blood. He looked back on that fateful day with Nathan Murphy.

"It was one of those rare collisions where it happened," he said.

"From the moment, it impacted and I landed on the grounded, I just felt winded."

Little did he realise how serious it was.

"I kept gasping for air and I can't really remember anything after then," Duffy continued.


"Last thing I probably remember is sitting up and then the doctors [saying] I'll be alright. I just woke up in the hospital and then that was it. It's quite surreal sometimes to hear it back."

He added that he feels very "lucky" to have come through that horrendous experience and praised the medical staff.

"If it wasn't for them, or if we were away in a different country maybe where we didn't have the facilities or the hospitals to do the procedure, it could have been so different," Duffy added.

"They realised straight away what was wrong. There was no blood on me, it was all internal. So for them to realise so quickly that it's internal... if you see a horror leg break, you know [what it is]."

Six to seven units of blood were necessary to cover the blood loss.

"Every chance I do get to give blood back now, I always try and do it," he said.

"Because if it wasn't for someone else's blood, I wouldn't be here. So it's massive and I would encourage it to my family now. I know my family do [donate] now as well because of what happened to me. It can save someone's life."

You will be able to watch the full Shane Duffy interview on YouTube.

Off The Ball and want to get more conversations happening in everyday life about blood donation and why it’s such an important habit to start, continue and encourage in others. When you give blood you really do help another person who is struggling with ill health or who has had a serious accident.

Statistically, one in four people will require a blood donation at some point in their lives. Yet the blood donation rate is just 3% at present.

You might not be able to attend your local clinic every time it comes to your town, but it’s really important to think about becoming a regular blood donor.

There are also new changes being introduced.  The UK deferral ban is being lifted from October 7th so that people previously unable to give blood if they were in the UK (including Northern Ireland) for over one year between 1980 and 1996, can now give blood, if they meet all the other normal blood donation criteria.

Check your eligibility & find your clinic: * Check your eligibility by doing the quick eligibility quiz.

Find out where your local clinic is or register your interest in the link below.

Find a clinic right here.

For more information, check out:

Or check out Giveblood on Youtube.

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Alan Byrne Brighton IBTS Injury Ireland Nathan Murphy Shane Duffy