Clean bill of health for Kerry ahead of final

Boss Eamon Fitzmaurice has confirmed that Kerry have a clean bill of health ahead of the All-Ireland final apart from long-term absentees Kieran O’Leary and Mikey Geaney, who will not play again this season.

“The injury update is the same really,” said Fitzmaurice.

“Mikey Geaney had surgery today on his back injury, Kieran O’Leary is a long-term absentee.

“Everyone else, we have the usual bumps and knocks, but we’d be hoping, barring anything happening in the meantime, that everyone else will be available for Sunday week.”

Fitzmaurice feels Dublin got a serious “gut check” in their replay win over Mayo.

“Impressive. I think they’ll be delighted with the two games from the point of view that they coasted through Leinster, did what they had to do, and were professional.

“Again, similarly with the Fermanagh game, they did what they had to do without really having to go up the gears. But I think they got a serious gut check, particularly the second day.

“The first day they played a lot of the football and probably are disappointed they didn’t close it out a bit better. With 20 minutes to go on Saturday night, they had to really up the ante and I think they did so. They were impressive, I was impressed with them.”

Meanwhile, Cian O’Sullivan claims there are pluses and minuses to Dublin’s 15-day turnaround between their semi-final replay win and Sunday week’s All-Ireland final.

“There’s pros and cons. Just from the point of view of doing your homework on the opposition…we really just focused on Mayo the last few weeks. We haven’t looked further than the semi-final. Now we have to recalibrate and take a look at Kerry.

“They’ve had a couple of extra weeks’ preparation in that sense. But two weeks should be sufficient to cover all bases. We won’t be doing a whole pile of heavy training; moreso just fine-tuning things and getting ready for the big one.”

The build-up will be an enjoyable one for O’Sullivan with both of his parents hailing from Kerry. How is he handling it? “A combination of excitement and nerves and a little bit of giddiness creeps in too. Just being mindful of all those things and just admin things. Getting your tickets out of the way and people hounding you.

“I kind of hand those things over to my Dad so I can just focus on the task in hand. But it’s a great time. We’re in a position where a lot of lads have been through this before and they know to be wary of the little things that you just need to get on top of as soon as you can so you can focus on the game.”

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