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The Ultimate XV Of GAA Players Playing Abroad This Summer

The Ultimate XV Of GAA Players Playing Abroad This Summer
By Balls Team

We're halfway through the championship and the exodus has well and truly begun.

While many players have already sailed to pastures new, opting to forego their GAA pursuits on foreign soil, many players are just following suit now having watched their counties fall out of the summer championship.

That got us thinking at Balls HQ: What is the best XV spending this summer playing abroad?

There is some leeway with many of the listed players having moved permanently, to either the States or across the Irish Sea, a couple of years ago. They still count, don't they?

Nevertheless, this is some team. Let us know if there are any glaring omissions.

1. Vinny Cadden

The Sligo man has been lining out at Gaelic Park for a number of years now after finishing his career with his own native Sligo. The veteran is one of the major strengths in the current New York side, putting in a man-of-the-match performance against Roscommon back in 2016, his first season on that side of the Atlantic.

2. Neil Collins

While it's clear GAA isn't the Roscommon man's priority at the moment - that would be furthering his fashion career - he could still do a job for most intercounty sides. The sticky corner-back was a nightmare for most forwards in the game when starring for Roscommon - and subsequently New York - and he's sure to make a few appearances over the summer in the state championship. The pull of the O'Neills ball is likely to be too great to ignore.

3. Gerard McCartan

The Down veteran, it's fair to say, has had an eventful career. After winning an All-Ireland minor title with Down in 2005, the corner-back went on to line out for his county's senior side before becoming one of the stalwarts on the current New York panel. Like Collins, the veteran is a pain in the side for those forwards who crave space and freedom.

4. Tom Cunniffe

Mayo's loss is New York's gain. The Castlebar Mitchels isn't lacking in terms of experience and boasts one of the meanest shoulders in the game. He, too, has been situated in the Big Apple for a few years and the word is he continues to age like a fine wine.

5. Caolan Mooney

The man who has been one of Down's star performers this season is heading to London where he will play with Neasden Gaels, joining fellow county player Connaire Harrison. The nifty player is a major scalp for the London club and can slot into most positions, such is his versatility.

6. Johnny Glynn

With Galway hurlers' championship already over, Johnny Glynn looks set to continue his ambitions on the other side of the Atlantic yet again. The Galway man spent one campaign commuting over and back across the Atlantic before moving home temporarily this summer. Now, with Galway's season over, Glynn could be back playing with the big ball for the rest of the summer in the States.

7. Shairoze Akram

Regarded as one of the top Mayo prospects, things just haven't fallen ideally for the Mayo man. He made a few appearances but never made the same significant impact with the Mayo senior side as he has made in the DCU jersey. Mayo players have a solid reputation in the US, a number of them winning a championship with McBride's club in Chicago only last year.

8. Cathal Compton

Compton's decision to leave Irish shores was viewed as a major loss to Roscommon football and one can only ponder how seriously good the Connacht men would be now if he was still around to anchor the midfield. He's a serious operator who is now getting the chance to bring his talent to the hotly-contested New York championship. Lucky New Yorkers.

9. Darren Gallagher

The Longford man was badly-needed when his county took to the field in the championship. Against Kildare, he was spotted working in the stands in his role as a Garda but rules in New York insist players that have played championship football on Irish soil cannot take part in the New York championship. They got a good one.

10. Colm Basquel

Dublin hardly need any more forwards but the Ballyboden St Enda's man seemed special, producing a number of eye-catching performances for the All-Ireland champions in recent years. Nevertheless he's been deemed as surplus to requirements by Jim Gavin's side and the Wolfe Tones in Chicago are the benefactors.

11. Diarmuid Connolly

The good news is: if you're fan of Diarmuid Connolly you can watch him play this summer. The bad news is: you'll need to splash the cash for a flight to Boston. The St Vincent's man is making the trip to Boston again this summer to play with Donegal Boston.

12. Cian Hanley

From Australia to Mayo to the States - what a journey. Nothing has been confirmed yet but the Mayo man is reported to be on his way to Boston for the summer. He hasn't lined out for Mayo this summer as of yet, after arriving home from Australia last year though he has experience of championship football from 12 months ago.

13. Connaire Harrison

While the Down forward was back playing for the county this summer, he has been playing in London for a while with Neasden Gaels. So when he arrives back at the club this summer he will be well accustomed to his surroundings. The club has made a few major signings this year but Harrison is likely to remain the fulcrum of the outfit. They will be a daunting opposition for every side they meet.

14. David Givney

Had Givney stayed around would Cavan got any closer to Donegal last Sunday? He certainly wouldn't have done them any harm. But he's not around and this summer he'll be lighting up the London championship once again.

15. Jamie Clarke

Armagh aren't out of the championship but, already, their sharpshooter has transferred to Neasden Gaels where he is one third of a serious triumvirate of talent heading to the club, the others being the aforementioned Harrison and Mooney. Noted as one of the best forwards in the game, Clarke would be the star-man on any intercounty side in the country.

SEE ALSO: What Kerry's Bench Shouted Explains The Gamble They're Trying To Pull Off

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