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kingdom boost David and Paudie Clifford could forge a formidable partnership for Kerry warns Donaghy

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David Clifford and elder brother Paudie could form a formidable partnership for Kerry in the championship

David Clifford and elder brother Paudie could form a formidable partnership for Kerry in the championship

David Clifford and elder brother Paudie could form a formidable partnership for Kerry in the championship

Kieran Donaghy has backed Paudie Clifford to force his way into the Kerry side this year.

Added to the squad for the 2020 season after some brilliant displays for East Kerry as they swept to last year’s Kerry SFC title, Clifford has been forced to bide his time to impress Peter Keane as the county season was put into hibernation.

But with Kerry back in action on Saturday when they travel to Inniskeen to play Monaghan, Donaghy reckons Clifford could play a significant part along side his brother and captain David as Kerry set off in pursuit of Sam once more.

“I think he has got an edge about him,” Donaghy said of the older Clifford brother.

“He is not everyone’s cup of tea. But he gets in people’s faces. I love that obviously. I think Kerry need that. And I think he’s got a good link with his brother. There’s a serious understanding there.

“I played with the three O’Ses and you could see their understanding of each other, out on the pitch, where they’d be.”

And he believes that should Paudie Clifford be drafted into the attack, it could see Seanie O’Shea shift to midfield.

“Seanie, if we can get him out to the middle of the field, because he is after getting stronger, he is after getting faster, he is in serious shape, his kicking ability is obviously undoubted - and I think he can give Kerry a real passing platform.

“David Moran is obviously a fantastic passer from the middle of the field, but I think Jack (Barry) and Diarmuid (O’Connor) have a bit to go on that regard.

“Picking out the hard pass. I think they see the hard pass, but I don’t know if they are backing their ability to make that kick.

“I think with Seanie, and David in the middle of the field, I think your forwards could make any run you want and the boys would have a good chance of playing the perfect ball into you, and I think forwards live off that.

“I think Paudie could get in there at either wing forward, or if they move Seanie to the middle of the field, you could definitely play him on the 40 yards.

“He is a bit like Declan O’Sullivan, he is low to the ground, he is as fast with the ball as he is without the ball.

“And you know I think Kerry needs a bit of the fire that’s in that man’s belly, and I think that could be infectious to the group. Obviously you have to control that emotion.

“It would be a much higher pressure situation than he ever faced before, but I’d like to give him the opportunity to do so.”

Online Editors