Colm Cooper isn't convinced that Diarmuid Connolly will see game-time with Dublin this year following his dramatic inter-county come-back.
Connolly hasn’t kicked a ball for the Dubs in more than a year and his last championship action was as a substitute in the 2017 All-Ireland final win over Mayo.
He rejoined manager Jim Gavin’s panel last week after a proposed move to play for the Donegal club in Boston for the summer fell through.
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"It’ll be amazing to see if he’ll get game-time. I still haven’t worked out whether he will or he won’t," said the Kerry legend, speaking on the latest edition of the RTÉ GAA Podcast.
"I just wonder is this a smokescreen to take the focus off the rest of the team and the squad. Can he add something? He definitely can. Are Dublin serious about this? I’m not convinced yet. Credit to Jim Gavin because his poker face is showing again and it’s a difficult one to read."
"We could well not see him play a minute in the championship. It would be a phenomenal turnaround for someone who hasn’t played championship football in two years, it would be sensational. For him to perform and dominate in the way he has in the past would be a serious ask."
Cooper, like many observers, felt that Connolly had played his last game for the Dubs and admits to being shocked when he heard the news of his recall.
"I think it's hilarious how Jim Gavin delivered it so nonchalantly into #DubsTV – I had a good laugh to myself," he chuckled.
"Here’s a guy who was going to Boston a few weeks ago, that didn’t work out for whatever reason, we were hearing it wasn’t going to work out with Dublin and then he drops in 'yeah, Diarmuid is back in with us’.
"I didn’t see it coming. My fear was that Diarmuid’s career was over when he had so much still to give – he’s still only 32 years old. He’s one of the best footballers I have played against in terms of balance, poise, positional play, scoring.
"We talk about leaders and making players better around them – he has that. It’s a strange one that he’s parachuted back in.
"What does it mean for Dublin in 2019? It reaffirms their status as hot, hot favourites for five in-a-row. They’ve so many game-changers in their squad and now here they have the most influential one of all. It strengthens their hand so much."