Paul Galvin set to make Kerry return in challenge match

Former Footballer of the Year will line out on Tuesday evening after his return was confirmed

Paul Galvin will play for the Kerry team in a challenge match on Tuesday night. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Paul Galvin will play for the Kerry team in a challenge match on Tuesday night. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

 

Eamonn Fitzmaurice thought he already had selection headaches ahead of him picking this year’s Kerry forward line with the return of Tommy Walsh and Colm Cooper - well now Paul Galvin has emerged from retirement.

The three-time All Star and 2009 Footballer of the Year has decided a year after hanging up his boots, and walking away from what would have been a fifth All-Ireland medal, to make a dramatic u-turn.

His head has obviously been turned by the success of last September and the promise of more in the year ahead, so at 35 he will join up with his brother in law Fitzmaurice, as soon as Tuesday night.

The Kerry manager confirmed the news in a brief statement on the Kerry GAA statement in which Fitzmaurice said “Paul Galvin has rejoined the Kerry Senior Football squad and resumed training this evening”.

Galvin will make his return on Tuesday night in a challenge match between the county’s senior and Under 21 panels, according to sources close to the Irish Times.

Thirteen months after retiring, with an autobiography thrown in for good measure, the Finuge club man will now compete with the likes of Walsh, Cooper, and Donnchadh Walsh for a place in the half forward line.

Galvin remains close friends with a number of the Kerry panel and management including new captain Kieran Donaghy.

Although primarily a half forward, Galvin has experience at both underage and university level as a half back and he was tested at centre half back before opting to retire .

Talking last year his manager said:

“We were looking at him in the half-back line and I think he could have done his old role in the half-forward line. He mightn’t have been a starter all of the time.

“Like, he’s 34 years of age - the way he played the game for a lot of years he took a lot of knocks. He minds his body very well, he lives like a monk but at the same time it required a lot of taking care of as well.”

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