Kerry attacker Paul Geaney has admitted he feared his season was over when he suffered a freak knee injury during February’s Allianz League win over Dublin.
Two-time All-Star Geaney was taken off after 55 minutes of that game but suffered the injury during a scuffle after full-time as the teams departed the pitch.
He explained that he was attempting to pick a team-mate off the ground when two other players, one from either team, fell into his leg, causing him immediate pain and prompting him to fear a cruciate tear.
It turned out to be lesser ligament damage though the 2014 All-Ireland winner had to undergo surgery which sidelined him for the next four games, only coming on for a matter of minutes in the final.
“It was the strangest (injury) I’ve picked up on a field having not actually been in competition,” said Geaney.
“Two fellas fell on top of me, into the side of my knee. I felt it straight away, I thought I was in more trouble than I was.
I felt the pressure on the knee straight away. I was thinking, ‘My year is over here’. Luckily it wasn’t. It was basically a nothing thing, it just wouldn’t clear up so I had to get a tidy up.
"It could be worse. Peter Crowley was playing a club game last month and did damage. I’m not sure what he’s looking at but he’s a big loss for us.
“It was Peter I was actually trying to pick up off the ground, I was just bending down to pick him up. Out of the side of my eye then I just saw two bodies come.
“It was just a freak thing. I hadn’t had any (knee) injury before, thank God. I just felt pressure straight away going into the knee.
"It was a weird sensation. I was kind of light headed and stuff. I was like, ‘Yeah, this isn’t good’.
"Then I woke up on the Sunday and I couldn’t move. But by Monday I was walking again so it was just one of those strange things.”
Geaney played four of Kerry’s eight league games in total, starting the first three and scoring two points each against Cavan and Dublin before coming on in the final at Croke Park.
He revealed it’s been an injury-interrupted season with problems arising even before the league began.
“I picked up in an injury in a challenge game the week before the league,” he said. “I played those first three games with a slight back/rib injury.
"It was kind of limbo territory where you’re alright to play but you’re never going to be 100% and playing your best stuff either.”
Kerry begin their Munster championship campaign against Clare on June 1, the same evening Liverpool play Spurs in the Champions League final.
Geaney is a big Liverpool supporter but said his full loyalty will be to Kerry on the evening.
“When it comes down to it, I’m a Kerry supporter first and foremost, that’s where my interest will be that day,” said Geaney.
“But I’d say there will be a lot of other supporters that might have to pick one or the other.”