It is a time of great change in the Kingdom. The Kerry footballer's endured a striking end to their Championship last year as they succumbed to a 2-16 to 0-17 loss against Mayo. This year a youthful and experimental side took to the League and finished fifth including a disappointing 2-17 to 0-11 loss against Dublin.
While the long-term future looks good question marks over their defence and squad turnover ensure Kerry's Championship odds have fallen in some books. However, speaking tonight on Radio Kerry, manager Éamonn Fitzmaurice felt last year's defeat could prove a positive going forward: "It was a very hurtful defeat for all of us, for the whole county, but that can drive you as well. "
Look, we as a group have to give the supporters something to cheer and then the supporters have to back us through thick and thin both in games and after games as well. When you get that dynamic right it can be fierce energetic and that collective support can be powerful. Yeah, looking forward to the summer, I'm really looking forward to it.
I think that the league we managed to stay in Division One. A lot of players got some experience. We'd some good days and some bad days, there was a lot of learning it. Any time Kerry move towards Championship you have to move with anticipation. I'm expecting a huge Championship from us, a lot of energy, a lot of excited and I'm looking forward to it.
Kerry open their Championship campaign in a Munster semi-final against either Clare or Limerick. While their league campaign was mixed, the addition of some familiar faces amongst those youthful ranks could provide a squad capable of a launching a charge for the Sam Maguire.