Dean Shiels

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Dean Shiels
Dean Shiels.jpg
Shiels pictured in July 2008, while playing for Hibernian
Personal information
Full name Dean Andrew Shiels[1]
Date of birth (1985-02-01) 1 February 1985 (age 30)[1]
Place of birth Magherafelt, Northern Ireland
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)[1]
Playing position Attacking midfielder
Club information
Current team
Number 22
Youth career
2001–2004 Arsenal
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2004–2009 Hibernian 117 (24)
2009–2012 Doncaster Rovers 83 (10)
2011–2012 Kilmarnock (loan) 20 (6)
2012 Kilmarnock 15 (7)
2012– Rangers 70 (19)
National team
Northern Ireland U16 3 (1)
Northern Ireland U17 8 (3)
Northern Ireland U19 5 (1)
2004–2006 Northern Ireland U21 6 (2)
2005– Northern Ireland 14 (1)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 17:20, 11 January 2015 (UTC).
† Appearances (goals)

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 30 March 2014

Dean Andrew Shiels (born 1 February 1985) is a Northern Irish footballer who currently plays as an attacking midfielder for Scottish Championship club Rangers.

When he was 8 years old, Sheils was in an accident causing complete loss of vision in one eye. In 2006 Dean decided to have the eye removed.

Shiels has represented Northern Ireland at full international level and has previously played for Arsenal youth teams, Doncaster Rovers, Hibernian and Kilmarnock. His father is Kenny Shiels, who was his manager at Kilmarnock.

Club career[edit]


Shiels started his professional career at Arsenal, but made no first team appearances for the club before signing for Hibernian in 2004.[2] In early 2006, Shiels had an operation to remove his right eye, which had been blind since a domestic accident when he was eight years old. The damaged eye was causing headaches and it was agreed that surgery was the best solution.[3] In November 2008, St. Mirren apologised to Shiels after one of their supporters verbally abused him regarding his disability during a match at Love Street.[4] Hearts also criticised their supporters after they taunted Shiels about his disability during an Edinburgh derby match.[5]

Shiels returned to action after his eye operation later in 2006.[6] He re-established himself in Hibs' first team squad in the 2006–07 season, scoring in the team's first two league matches. He scored his first hat-trick for Hibs on 12 January 2008 in a 3–0 win over Inverness Caledonian Thistle in the Scottish Cup, but Shiels struggled to establish himself as a Hibs first-team regular throughout his time at Easter Road.[7]

Doncaster Rovers[edit]

Shiels, whose contract with Hibernian was due to expire in the summer of 2009, signed for Doncaster Rovers on 2 February 2009.[7] He was transferred for a fee of around £50,000.[8] He made his Rovers debut on 21 February 2009, coming on as a second-half substitute in a 3–1 defeat at Swansea City. His first goal for the club came in the last home match of the 2008–09 season, when he scored the first goal in a 2–0 victory over Crystal Palace.

Shiels performed impressively in the 2009–10 season, his first full season with the club, scoring six goals in 25 starts from midfield.[citation needed] During the 2010–11 season, however, Shiels lost his place in the Doncaster starting line-up.[8] He was loaned to Kilmarnock in July 2011 and his contract was mutually terminated in January 2012.[9]


Shiels signed a six-month loan deal with Kilmarnock, managed by his father Kenny Shiels, in July 2011.[8] Shiels made his first appearance for Kilmarnock on 30 July 2011, in a goalless draw against Motherwell at Rugby Park, coming on as a 74th-minute substitute. Shiels scored his first goal for Kilmarnock in a 2–1 away defeat to Inverness CT. He scored a penalty in a 1–0 win over Hearts, after Marius Zaliukas fouled Paul Heffernan. Shiels signed for Kilmarnock on a permanent basis in January 2012.[10] Shiels scored the only goal of the Scottish League Cup semi-final against Ayrshire derby rivals Ayr United on 28 January. He also scored the winning goal in a game against Rangers at Ibrox on 18 February, in Rangers' first game after entering administration.[11] On 18 March, he played in the 2012 Scottish League Cup Final, which Kilmarnock won after beating Celtic 1–0.[12] Shiels was shortlisted for the SPFA Players' Player of the Year award, along with Jon Daly, Steven Davis and Charlie Mulgrew.[13] Shiels rejected the offer of a new contract with Kilmarnock and left the club at the end of the season.[14]


Shiels signed for Rangers on 31 July 2012.[14] Kilmarnock's chairman Michael Johnson believes Rangers had underestimate Kilmarnock to get Shiels.[15] Shiels vowed to make the club win a trophy this season and revealed he turned down clubs around Europe, which he could even play in the Champions League; instead, preferring to join Rangers.[16][17]

He scored a goal, as well as, setting up two goals in his first appearance, in a Scottish League Cup tie against East Fife on 7 August.[18] A week after he sustained an injury during a match which ruled him out for weeks,[19] On 2 September 2012, Shiels scored his first league goal, as well as setting up a goal, in a 5–1 win over Elgin City.[20] After scoring two goals in three games, Shiels scored against the Scottish Premier League side Motherwell, in a Scottish League Cup tie.[21] Then, in the Scottish Cup, Shiels scored twice and earns a hat-trick assist, as Rangers thrashed Alloa Athletic 7–0 on 3 November 2012.[22] As the season progressed, Shiels sustained a cruciate ligament damage during a match against Annan Athletic, which Rangers lost 2–1.[23] After surgery,[24] it was announced that Shiels would miss the reminder of the season.[25]

Despite the several injuries he sustained, Shiels helped the club win the Third Division and was promoted to Second Division (now Scottish League One. Shiels believes his international career was not affected while playing for Rangers despite being warned.[26]

On the opening game of the 2013–14 season, Shiels scored as Rangers won 4–1 against Brechin City.[27] Shiels sustained another knee injury.[28] Two months after his return, Shiels scored a brace, in a 2–0 win over East Fife on 11 January 2014.[29] Shiel's lack of playing time led to transfer speculation with moves linked to Partick Thistle and returning to Hibernian after the rumoured cost-cutting that is due to take place at the club. Manager Ally McCoist refuted the sale of Shiels[30][31] Daily Mail reported that Shiels wants £200,000 pay-off from Rangers before leaving the club.[32] On 8 February 2014, Shiels scored a hat-trick in the Scottish Cup, as Rangers won 4–0 against Dunfermline Athletic.[33]

Lack of first team football continued under McCoist during the first half of the 2014/15 season. When Stuart McCall took over after McCoists resignation however, Sheils was put back in the frame and was instrumental in late season wins over Hibs and Hearts and continued his good form in the Premiership play-off quarter final tie against Queen of the South, scoring the second goal in a 2–1 first leg win.

Sheils role at Rangers began to come into question following the arrival of new manager Mark Warburton in the summer of 2015 and the departure of 8 previously first team players. However, goals against Airdrie in the Scottish League cup and St Mirren in the Scottish Championship opening game showed the Sheils was still in the frame at Rangers.

International career[edit]

Shiels won his first Northern Ireland cap against Portugal in November 2005.[34] He was recalled to the squad for the match against Scotland in August 2008 after an absence of 18 months.[35] Shiels appeared as a second-half substitute in the goalless draw at Hampden Park.[36] Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill said in February 2012 that Shiels could still have an international future.[37] O'Neill selected Shiels during the 2012–13 season despite him playing in the Scottish Third Division.[38] Shiels scored his first international goal on 12 September, in a 1–1 draw against Luxembourg.[39]

International goals[edit]

Scores and goals list Northern Ireland's goal tally first.
# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1. 12 September 2012 Windsor Park, Belfast  Luxembourg 1–0 1–1 2014 World Cup qualifier




  1. ^ a b c Hugman, Barry J., ed. (2009). The PFA Footballers' Who's Who 2009–10. Mainstream Publishing. p. 374. ISBN 978-1-84596-474-0. 
  2. ^ Collin, Iain (6 August 2004). "Shiels keen to use Arsenal education". Edinburgh Evening News (Johnston Press). 
  3. ^ "Hibs' Shiels to have eye removed". BBC Sport (BBC). 19 January 2006. 
  4. ^ "St Mirren apology to Hibs' Shiels". BBC Sport (BBC). 3 November 2008. 
  5. ^ "Edinburgh clubs condemn jeering". BBC Sport (BBC). 5 January 2009. 
  6. ^ "Shiels and Thompson in U21 squad". BBC Sport (BBC). 7 May 2006. 
  7. ^ a b "Doncaster snap up striker Shiels". BBC Sport (BBC). 2 February 2009. 
  8. ^ a b c John Barnes and Alison Robbie (29 July 2011). "Doncaster's Dean Shiels signs for father at Kilmarnock". BBC Sport (BBC). Retrieved 29 July 2011. 
  9. ^ "Shiels Leaves Rovers". (Doncaster Rovers FC). 11 January 2012. Retrieved 18 February 2012. 
  10. ^ "Kilmarnock complete deals for Dean Shiels and Ben Gordon". BBC Sport (BBC). 11 January 2012. Retrieved 11 January 2012. 
  11. ^ Murray, Ewan (18 February 2012). "Rangers' troubled week gets worse as Kilmarnock pile on misery". The Observer. Retrieved 18 February 2012. 
  12. ^ "Celtic 0–1 Kilmarnock". BBC Sport (BBC). 18 March 2012. Retrieved 19 March 2012. 
  13. ^ "Dean Shiels hopes to stay at Kilmarnock". STV (STV Group). 19 April 2012. Retrieved 19 April 2012. 
  14. ^ a b "Rangers clinch signing of Dean Shiels". BBC Sport (BBC). 31 July 2012. Retrieved 31 July 2012. 
  15. ^ "Kilmarnock chairman reveals how Rangers uncertainty scuppered Dean Shiels deal". Herald Scotland. 1 August 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  16. ^ "Dean Shiels: I snubbed Champions League to realise Gers dream in Division Three". Daily Record. 1 August 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  17. ^ "Rangers can win the Third Division and the Scottish Cup says new boy Dean Shiels". Daily Record. 1 August 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  18. ^ "Rangers 4–0 East Fife". BBC Sport (BBC). 7 August 2012. Retrieved 7 August 2012. 
  19. ^ "Rangers fans roll up as Ibrox circus gather steam". Daily Record. 20 August 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  20. ^ "Rangers 5–1 Elgin City". BBC Sport. 2 September 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  21. ^ "Rangers ease past SPL leaders Motherwell as Ibrox club cruise into quarter-finals". Daily Record. 26 September 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  22. ^ "Rangers 7  – 0 Alloa Athletic". BBC Sport. 3 November 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  23. ^ "Rangers 1–2 Annan Athletic". BBC Sport. 9 March 2013. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  24. ^ "Rangers send striker Dean Shiels for scan amid fears over cruciate ligament damage". Daily Record. 13 March 2013. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  25. ^ "Rangers forward Dean Shiels will miss NI qualifiers". BBC Sport. 15 March 2013. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  26. ^ "Dropping to third division with Rangers hasn't killed my Northern Ireland career, says Dean Shiels". Daily Record. 16 September 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  27. ^ "Rangers 4 Brechin 1: Hegarty, Law, Black and Shiels on target as Gers begin life in League 1 with a breeze". Daily Mail. 10 August 2013. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  28. ^ "No timetable on return for Shiels as Coisty plays it safe". Evening Times. 23 October 2013. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  29. ^ "Rangers 2 – 0 East Fife". BBC Sport. 11 January 2014. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  30. ^ "McCoist insists Shiels is staying at Ibrox quashing rumours that attacker will be sold". Daily Mail. 31 December 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  31. ^ "Playing for Rangers means everything to Dean Shiels.. that's why he'll never leave, says Ibrox keeper Cammy Bell". Daily Record. 13 January 2014. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  32. ^ "Shiels wants £200,000 pay-off from Rangers before returning to Hibs". Daily Mail. 10 January 2014. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  33. ^ "angers striker Dean Shiels sends a message to Scottish Cup rivals: Dunfermline hat trick proves I am getting back to my best". Daily Record. 9 February 2014. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  34. ^ N Ireland 1–1 Portugal, BBC Sport, 15 November 2005.
  35. ^ Shiels and Duff back in NI squad, BBC Sport, 11 August 2008.
  36. ^ Moffat, Colin (20 August 2008). "Scotland 0–0 Northern Ireland". BBC Sport (BBC). 
  37. ^ "Billy McKinlay and Tommy Wright join Northern Ireland set-up". BBC Sport (BBC). 8 February 2012. Retrieved 18 February 2012. 
  38. ^ Wilson, Fraser (6 August 2012). "Rangers duo Andrew Little & Dean Shiels included in Northern Ireland squad". Daily Record (Trinity Mirror). Retrieved 12 September 2012. 
  39. ^ "World Cup qualifier: Northern Ireland 1 Luxembourg 1". Daily Record (Trinity Mirror). 12 September 2012. Retrieved 12 September 2012. 

External links[edit]