'The medical advice was not to play him' - Clifford misses Kerry's Munster final but set for quick return

Kerry coped without their star forward as they ran out 23-point winners in today’s Munster final.

Kerry footballer David Clifford.
Kerry footballer David Clifford.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

STAR FORWARD DAVID Clifford is expected to return to full training soon for Kerry after missing today’s Munster final with a minor injury.

Kerry boss Jack O’Connor revealed Clifford had picked up the knock in the semi-final win over Cork and the medical advice was not to play him today against Limerick in Killarney.

“He picked up an injury against Cork, we weren’t being clever or anything but we thought it was going to come right,” said O’Connor.

“But it just took a bit longer to come around than we thought. The medical advice was not to play him in this game. He’s gone back doing a bit, away from the full training.
I’d say he’ll be doing a good share of training next week hopefully.”

O’Connor admitted Kerry’s four-week layoff now until the All-Ireland quarter-finals is a concern as they grapple with the championship schedule. A challenge game against Roscommon last Saturday was used to aid their preparations.

“What you’re trying to do is break it up. It can become a bit routine if you’re coming into Fitzgerald Stadium every night training, that’s what you’re trying to avoid, the thing becoming routine. We played Roscommon in a challenge last Saturday and it was a good game for us. We learned a few things. It’s always a help to break it up.

“I’d consider it (another challenge game) yeah but like you’re running out of teams now at this stage. Thinking about it, how many teams are going to be available? So we’ll have a look at it, we’ll see.

“Of course four weeks is an issue. That’s why the system next year is going to be fairer for everybody. I’m not too concerned about the game today but I am relatively concerned about having four weeks off. I’ve gone on record as saying we played eight games in ten weeks in the league and we’re playing three games in 12 weeks in the championship. Sure that can’t be right? That system had to be fixed.”

sean-oshea-with-jack-oconnor-at-the-end-of-the-game Jack O'Connor with Sean O'Shea after the game. Source: Ken Sutton/INPHO

Kerry’s latest triumph in the province arrived in a comfortable fashion as they cruised Limerick with 23 points to spare.

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“Sure of course you’d probably prefer to get a stiffer test but look, we set out our stall, we had certain targets in the game. By and large we met most of them. We were a bit unhappy with the start, we only had three scores from eight attacks early on so I thought we were a bit wasteful there. Towards the end of the first half in particular and the start of the second half we upped the ante and we were comfortable enough after that.”

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Fintan O'Toole

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