Premier League icon Richard Dunne has ended up in Monte Carlo after spells on Merseyside as well as in Manchester and Birmingham – and he is the first to admit it’s not what he’s used to.
The imposing defender made 431 appearances in the competition across spells with Everton, Manchester City, Aston Villa and QPR – at the same time racking up 80 appearances for the Republic of Ireland.
Dunne called time on his career following two seasons in west London from 2013 to 2015, later moving with his wife and two children to Monte Carlo – where they reside to this day.
“It’s different,” Bet365 ambassador Dunne told Daily Star Sport about his new life, having grown up in Tallaght, Dublin, before joining Everton as a 15-year-old schoolboy.
“I run an academy over here and work with a local club coaching kids, so I still do football every day. Games at weekends stuff like that.
“The difference is the weather, it’s nice to be able to put a pair of shorts on and this morning I’ve been for a swim before this, so it’s nice.
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“I’m going back to Ireland this afternoon for a couple of days. I enjoy going back there and to England as well.
“I think when you live somewhere it’s not the holiday that you go on, you know?
“When you live anywhere you have to get on with normal day to day things, so it’s nicer doing it in better weather.”
Not one to take his eye off the football, Dunne has been left disappointed in Everton’s season as a whole and also thinks Aston Villa need to strengthen, but the same can’t be said for City.
Dunne was a team-mate of Alf-Inge Haaland, the father of their blockbuster signing Erling Haaland, during his time in Manchester, and can foresee another Premier League title on the horizon.
He says: “He looks like an unbelievable footballer.
“He’s got all the attributes of what you need in the Premier League, he can win headers, he can battle center-halves, he can out sprint center backs, he’s got an instance to be in the right position to score goals.
“When you watch Man City, they do get down the line and put so many balls across the six-yard box, you’re just screaming out for a player just to be stood there.
“I think Haaland will be a player who will be happy enough to forego all of the build-up play and just wait until it comes to him in a position to score. It’s going to be an exciting signing.”