'I Think If He Really Wanted To, He Would Have Gone To England'

'I Think If He Really Wanted To, He Would Have Gone To England'

Is there anything that this man isn't good at? Kerry's David Clifford took the GAA world by storm this year, producing a remarkable debut season at senior level which has seen him become an All-Star lock.

However it seems that his talents are not restricted to Gaelic football. If he had been so inclined, Clifford could have pursued a career playing football of a different kind in England.

Speaking on the Independent's LOI weekly podcast, Kerry-born UCD midfielder Gary O'Neill said that Clifford was good enough to travel across the water if he had decided to pursue that code professionally.

David Clifford, who is now one of the top footballers in the country, was on my dad's Kennedy Cup team.

I think if he really wanted to, he would have gone to England. He was an unbelievable soccer player. He is an absolute animal.

Surprisingly, O'Neill also added that his playing style in soccer is quite different to what we see when he is in a action on the GAA pitch.

He is actually different to what he is in GAA, in GAA he is very stylish.

In soccer he is a centre half. He is big, strong, physical. He heads it and kicks it. He could have done really good things I think. He was from a real GAA-dominated area.


Clifford is an incredible athlete, so it is not at all surprising that he excelled at a variety sports. It is unknown if the Fossa man ever seriously considered a career in soccer, although he has always seemed to be fully focused on GAA.

He was rumoured to have been heavily recruited by AFL teams after the conclusion of last year's minor championship, however he turned down all offers to pursue his dream of playing on the Kerry senior team.

However a story such as this does make you wonder what might have been. With the injury crisis currently being experienced by Martin O'Neill's side, David Clifford could have been lining out in Cardiff this evening.

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Gary Connaughton

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