James McCarthy has admitted that he would like to see former Dublin footballer Diarmuid Connolly returning to Jim Gavin’s panel.
Earlier this month Gavin said that he is hopeful that the St Vincents’ sharpshooter will return to the squad for the season but no decision has been made yet.
Speaking at the AIB Launch of the Senior Football Championship, McCarthy admitted that he would like to see his former teammate return to the Dublin set-up.
“Jim has an open door policy. Diarmuid is a great player, (it would be) great to have him back. You’ve just got to respect the decision there but it’s always an open door policy there. You’ll have to ask Jim that.”
One player who has made a return to the blue jersey is Rory O’Carroll after four years away. The Kilmacud Crokes defender will need time to readjust to inter-county championship life but McCarthy maintained that his return has already upped the competition level within the squad.
“He’s been going great. I obviously played against Rory in the club championship game against Kilmacud and he was good against us that night. He’ll add greatly to our already great set of backs. The competition has ramped up altogether now again.
“Everyone’s pushing so hard for places. Everyone’s worrying about their own spots at the moment, the competition is that good. So it’s exciting to see how it goes.
“Lads have a lot of respect for him, he’s a great character and he’s a strong-willed man. He was obviously a very important player for us before he went away. He’s come back now, he’s excited to be back and he has a huge challenge to compete for a place on the team. Lads were delighted to have him back.”
McCarthy also paid tribute to six-time All Ireland winner, Paul Flynn, following his retirement from Gaelic Football earlier this month.
“Paul is an all or nothing man. He was a great leader in the team. He really drove that team on for years. He’s going to be a big loss but you’ve got to respect the decision he’s made.
“I won’t miss him too much, we used to go toe-to-toe a lot for many years and were knocking scalps out of each other in A vs B games (laughs). I’m joking but he was a great servant to the team.”
Ballymun Kickhams and Dublin footballer James McCarthy was speaking at AIB’s launch of the 2019 Senior Football Championship. Entering into their fifth season sponsoring the county championship and now in their 28th year sponsoring the club championships, AIB champion the belief that ‘Club Fuels County’.