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Crushing blow of McCaffrey's exit opens new chink of vulnerability in armoury of hitherto invincible force

Frank Roche


Shock departure of jet-heeled defender means new manager Farrell’s team are more exposed to being toppled in a season already compromised

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Jack McCaffrey celebrates on the Croke Park pitch after Dublin successfully completed the 'Drive for Five' last night. Photo: Sam Barnes

Jack McCaffrey celebrates on the Croke Park pitch after Dublin successfully completed the 'Drive for Five' last night. Photo: Sam Barnes

SPORTSFILE

Jack McCaffrey celebrates on the Croke Park pitch after Dublin successfully completed the 'Drive for Five' last night. Photo: Sam Barnes

THIS much is beyond dispute: the 2020 championship, even in its slimline form prompted by a global pandemic, will be a much poorer place for the absence of Jack McCaffrey.

But what does it mean for Dublin's defence of their seemingly perennial possession, Sam Maguire?

There are two ways of looking at this. You can cite 2016 as proof they have the squad to sustain the loss of a reigning Footballer of the Year. They still won it that year, without Jack.