injury nightmare | 

Cian O’Sullivan says he considered quitting GAA before winning eight All-Ireland medals

Former Dublin footballer Cian O’Sullivan in attendance at the EirGrid Timing Sponsorship Launch

Donnchadh Boyle

Former Dublin star Cian O’Sullivan has revealed that he considered packing in his inter-county career before he really got going.

As an eight-time All-Ireland winner, O’Sullivan is one of the most decorated players to play the game, but before he got his hands on his first Celtic Cross, he considered walking away due to injury.

“Looking back to 2011, I missed that whole year through injury up to the All-Ireland quarter-final against Tyrone. And I was lucky to get back into the squad then,” he recalled.

“Paul Conlon was starting corner-back and doing a really good job. Pat Gilroy gave me the nod on the day against Tyrone and I played well and secured a position for the semi-final and the final. I was very, very close to packing it in in 2011 as well due to injuries. I’d had a horrific time with my hamstrings and I had taken a lot of time out away from the squad to do one-on-one training to get it right. The first week I came back I tweaked something in my calf and because I had been out of that high-intensity environment for so long it was bound to happen.

“So I was kind of talked down from stepping away by my family at the time and thankfully that was the case, because a few weeks later I was playing against Tyrone and we went on and won the All Ireland.”

O’Sullivan stepped away from Dublin last year after suffering another injury setback in a challenge game. And he hasn’t put on a pair of boots since with his body not allowing him to be part of Kilmacud Crokes’ run to this year’s All-Ireland club final.

“I will step away for a while and just let the body maybe naturally heal and see if I could get back playing at some kind of level, because I definitely miss it. I didn’t really phase it out at all. I went from eating, sleeping, drinking football to zero overnight. I’d still like to get back playing some kind of level.”

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