Jim Gavin leaves a spot open on Dublin panel for Diarmuid Connolly return 10 months ago

Jim Gavin leaves a spot open on Dublin panel for Diarmuid Connolly return

Dublin GAA manager Jim Gavin has not ruled out a possible return to intercounty football for St. Vincent's forward Diarmuid Connolly.

Connolly, a five-time All-Ireland winner, left the Dublin senior football panel last year after he was left on the peripheries of their National League campaign. He spent last summer in America with Donegal Boston in the Boston Senior Football Championship.

He was not included in the Dublin squad for their 2019 league opener with Monaghan on Sunday but Gavin revealed that the door is still open for the forward if he wants to return.

"It’s like any player who volunteers their time for playing inter-county football," Gavin told RTE.

"Those choices that they make are purely those choices and, if players want to come back, we’ll be delighted to have them."

Connolly thrived in the United States and helped Donegal Boston to a Boston SFC Final win over the Wolfe Tones scoring 12 of his side's 17 points in the win.

He also scored four of Donegal's 13 points as they overcame Aidan McAnespies by four points in the semi-final.

Gavin said last year that the door was open for Connolly to return and that he hoped that he would be back in Gaelic Games soon.

"The situation is that Diarmuid just hasn't been available to play football and hurling with his club, and with the county as well," Gavin said in May.

"We respect that position, and hopefully everyone does as well. It is an amateur sport, but that said, the door will always be open for Diarmuid, and I know for sure with the club and also the county. Hopefully, we'll see him back playing Gaelic games soon.

"I just hope we've a duty of care within the Association, for anyone who volunteers their time. It is an amateur sport, be it managers we have here today, that you respect them, and from a player perspective as well, and I hope people understand that."