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Dublin: 7 °C Sunday 17 November, 2019

'I don’t think it will do him any harm' - Gilroy on Connolly's US summer move

Diarmuid Connolly is reportedly set to spend the next couple of months playing football in the States.

PAT GILROY BELIEVES Diarmuid Connolly’s decision to spend the summer playing football in the US won’t “do him any harm” as his break away from the inter-county game continues.

Diarmuid Connolly Source: Bryan Keane/INPHO

The Irish Examiner reported yesterday that Connolly is deciding between Boston and New York as potential destinations for a move later this month.

The two-time All-Star decided to step away from the Dublin squad during the league and didn’t line-out with St Vincent’s during Dublin club football or hurling championship in April.

He did return to feature for the club’s hurlers in a league game recently and while he looks set to spend the summer across the water, Connolly is expected to return in time for the latter stages of the Dublin SFC and SHC.

“He obviously is a loss (to Dublin),” Gilroy said after Dublin’s Leinster SHC win over Offaly yesterday.

“But coming so late into the season, he probably has decided he wants a break from everything. I don’t think it will do him any harm.”

Pat Gilroy at the end of the game Source: Oisin Keniry/INPHO

Gilroy is fellow St Vincent’s man and was team-mates with Connolly for their All-Ireland club success in 2008. He was Dublin football manager when Connolly lifted the Sam Maguire for the first time in 2011.

The news of Connolly’s departure confirms he won’t be lining out with Jim Gavin’s side this year, but Gilroy feels a return was unlikely at this stage.

“With the footballers, certainly a fella of his class is going to be a loss to them but he’s not been around,” he said. “They will have well and truly moved on from expecting to have him back.”

Pat Gilroy with Diarmuid Connolly Gilroy and Connolly at a Dublin football training session in 2011. Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Gilroy, who is now in charge of the county hurlers, admits he didn’t chase Connolly to join the hurling panel after the news broke that he had left the football squad back in April.

“I didn’t. No.  I think, certainly, before Christmas, he was intending to play football and then I think he just decided he wanted a complete break.”

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Kevin O'Brien

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