PAUL GALVIN has admitted that he might have reconsidered retiring from inter-county football had Colm Cooper's injury occurred before he walked away, but insists that there will be no reversal of his decision.
The Kingdom are facing into a summer without Cooper, Galvin and the retired Tomás Ó Sé, prompting fears that Éamon Fitzmaurice could lack for leaders this season.
But the 2009 Footballer of the Year is adamant that, firstly, Kerry can challenge for Sam Maguire in his and Cooper's absences and, secondly, that he won't play in the green and gold again.
"I wouldn't be as down in the mouth about it as people have been," he insisted.
"It's obviously a blow, you're talking about probably the best player to have ever played the game, which is obviously a loss.
"I just think Kerry are still in a good place. I think Kerry can't afford to be as down in the mouth as has been portrayed since Colm's injury, the group can't have that mentality.
"The group have to come alive now and get better themselves, and look to fill the void in a different way, and maybe play in a different way.
"You're talking about a player maybe of the calibre of Declan or Darran O'Sullivan going onto the '40'.
"Colm is a huge loss and there's no real way of calculating the loss because he's the type of player you can't replace, and he does things that no one else does.
"It's just up to someone else to step up and maybe Kerry play a different way, but there's still an opportunity for somebody.
"Kerry are still going to be knocking around come late August or early September. I wouldn't be as negative as it might appear."
However, he also stressed that a return to Kerry was "not on the agenda".
Explaining his decision publicly for the first time, Galvin confirmed that he made up his mind after a challenge game against Dr Crokes in which he lined out at centre-back and received a black card.
"I just felt I wasn't there," he revealed. "I just felt that was that.
"I don't think I was emotional really, to be honest. I just did it and that was it. It's only a tough thing to do until you make the decision.
"Once you make it then it's fine. It's been fine since," Galvin concluded.