The footballer of the year dislocated his right shoulder before half-time in Sunday’s runaway quarter-final victory over Kildare, raising concerns that his season could be over.
However, it was confirmed yesterday that Kerry team physio Eddie Harnett, with the help of team doctor, Dr Lynda O’Callaghan was able to ‘reduce’, or pop back in the shoulder on the pitch at the time.
A garden variety shoulder dislocation usually sidelines a GAA player for anywhere between four and eight weeks, but that timeframe is dependent on whether immediate and successful intervention is possible.
O’Donoghue was brought straight to the Mater Hospital by ambulance for x-ray, and was able to rejoin his team-mates in Jurys Croke Park hotel for their post-match meal before returning to Killarney Sunday night.
The initial scan confirmed no fracture and encouragingly, the shoulder alignment had returned to its natural position.
However an MRI scan, probably Thursday, will determine how quickly O’Donoghue can begin his rehabilitation and whether he can realistically set his sights on Croke Park in just under three weeks.
A statement issued to the Kerry GAA website yesterday suggested “there was no serious injury sustained.” It added: “He will have a routine MRI Scan and will rest for a few days before beginning rehab and a graduated return to action.”