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McFadden admits fears for Donegal when Murphy retires

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Michael Murphy. Photo: Sportsfile

Michael Murphy. Photo: Sportsfile

SPORTSFILE

Michael Murphy. Photo: Sportsfile

Former Donegal star Colm McFadden worries about the day when Michael Murphy eventually calls time on his inter-county career.

McFadden played an integral part in the Donegal side which Murphy led to All-Ireland SFC success under Jim McGuinness eight years ago - and he believes that the Glenswilly powerhouse is playing the best football of his career in recent seasons.

Murphy has skippered Donegal for the last ten years and cemented his place as one of the best footballers of the modern generation.

However, at 30, the three-time All Star looks to be edging closer to the latter stages of a stellar career.

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McFadden acknowledges that Murphy will be a "massive loss" whenever he hangs up his boots but he rates the current Donegal crop highly and feels that Declan Bonner's men can break the glass ceiling and possibly secure All-Ireland honours over the coming years.

Levels

"Michael Murphy has always been good for Donegal but this past two or three years, he's even gone to new levels and he's playing really good football. My worry would be whenever he retires or gets older," McFadden said.

"He'll be a massive loss but that's not going to be for a while yet. They're close but you need a wee bit of luck as well. When you have (Paddy) McBrearty, he was only coming back from a cruciate last year, Murphy and Jamie Brennan, you have three quality inside forwards.

"When you have good forwards like that, you're always in with a chance and it's about getting that momentum and going on that bit of a run, because the level that the Dubs are at right now is hard to get to.

"Kerry are obviously getting close but they're not far away and Donegal just need to keep putting themselves up there. The more you're up there, the more chance you have of getting over the line."

Irish Independent