James McCarthy not getting distracted by five in-a-row hype ahead of Dublin's championship return
Dublin's James McCarthy has acknowledged that this season is 'different' but insists the All-Ireland champions will not be preoccupied by their historic quest for five titles in a row.
The six-times All-Ireland medallist said Dublin had never looked at 'things in a row.'
"From our perspective we take every season as it comes. This season is probably different than others but we are looking forward to it. People mean well and there is no malice in what they say (about the five-in-row). But we're just focussing on our first match against Louth.
"It was a bit tricky training for the last couple of weeks because we didn't know who we would be playing. Now we know it's Louth so we can focus on them. They are a good side and nearly got promoted. I'm just excited that the championship is up and running.”
Dublin travel to Portlaoise for the game on Saturday week but McCarthy enjoys these games on the road.
"I enjoy going down the country. We mixed the good and the bad in the league but we were involved in some cracking games. We took our break in April and we came back two weeks ago and we are mad to get ready for the championship."
While McCarthy declined to comment on the unending speculation over whether Diarmuid Connolly would be part of the squad this summer, he said Rory O'Carroll's return to the panel after a three-year absence had been seamless.
"He obviously looked after himself when he was away. The first time I came across him after his return was in a club championship between Ballymun and Kilmacud. He was damn good that night.
"He is delighted to be back and he will be pushing hard for the next two weeks like the us all," said McCarthy who was speaking at the official AIB launch of the All-Ireland championship.