• Home
  • /
  • GAA
  • /
  • Dessie Farrell Remains Coy On Stephen Cluxton's Future Despite Dublin Return

Dessie Farrell Remains Coy On Stephen Cluxton's Future Despite Dublin Return

Dessie Farrell Remains Coy On Stephen Cluxton's Future Despite Dublin Return
Eoin Harrington
By Eoin Harrington
Share this article

The final day of the Allianz Football League came with some bombshell news from Croke Park, with Stephen Cluxton returning to Dublin's matchday panel for the first time since 2020.

Eight-time All-Ireland winner Cluxton stepped back from the panel after their triumph in the 2020 final against Mayo, though no statement was ever made to suggest he had formally retired.

Whenever he has been quizzed on the subject over the past two years, Dublin manager Dessie Farrell has merely continued to say that Cluxton was unavailable for selection. Most fans presumed that Cluxton had slipped quietly into retirement, especially as he moved into his 40s.

The 41-year-old's return was therefore a huge surprise on Sunday afternoon, with the news dropping mere minutes before throw in for Dublin's league clash with Louth.

After Dublin recorded a comprehensive win, Dessie Farrell revealed that Cluxton had returned due to a build up of injuries in the Dublin squad - but remained coy on whether he will remain with the squad long-term.

Dessie Farrell remains tight-lipped on Stephen Cluxton

Stephen Cluxton Dublin

26 March 2023; Dublin substitute Stephen Cluxton, right, watches the second half of Allianz Football League Division 2 match between Dublin and Louth at Croke Park in Dublin. Photo by Ray McManus/Sportsfile

Paul Mannion also returned to Dublin's matchday squad on Sunday, playing his first game for the county since the 2020 All-Ireland final. Mannion's return, combined with that of Jack McCaffrey, already had Dublin looking a more daunting prospect ahead of the 2023 season - and the presence of Cluxton in the camp will only add to that.


That is, of course, if Cluxton sticks around for the year.

Cluxton was an unused subsitute for Dublin against Louth, with Dessie Farrell sticking with Na Fianna man David O'Hanlon between the posts.


Speaking to RTÉ Radio after Dublin's comprehensive seven-point win in Croke Park, Farrell revealed that Cluxton had rejoined the squad due to Evan Comerford's persistent injury issues, coupled with an injury for another of Dublin's back-up 'keepers.

Farrell stopped short of confirming whether Cluxton's return was permanent, but said that Dublin would value his presence in the squad for the "next few weeks" at least:

Stephen's been back in training a couple of weeks, he's fit and healthy.

We've had a couple of goalkeeping injury woes and Evan Comerford hasn't played football this season just yet. He is working his way back to full recovery and another goalkeeper who was with the under-20s got injured so Stephen stepped into the breach.

We're delighted to have him and it's great to have his experience and leadership around the place.

The competitive juices are still there. He'll be doing his best at training for the next few weeks. Stephen always said he'd make himself available if we had injury issues and that's the way it turned out.

With David O'Hanlon impressing throughout the league campaign, and Evan Comerford working his way back from injury, Stephen Cluxton will have to earn his spot in Dublin's starting 15 if he does remain part of the camp for the summer.

Dublin will face Derry in next weekend's Division Two final, with Cluxton likely to be involved once again. They will get their championship campaign underway against either Wexford or Laois next month.

SEE ALSO: Pat Spillane Bemoans Modern Gaelic Football With Intriguing Andy Farrell Comparison

Pat Spillane Andy Farrell Joe Schmidt




Join The Monday Club Have a tip or something brilliant you wanted to share on? We're looking for loyal Balls readers free-to-join members club where top tipsters can win prizes and Balls merchandise

Processing your request...

You are now subscribed!

Share this article

Copyright © 2024. All rights reserved. Developed by Square1 and powered by PublisherPlus.com