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Dublin v Derry — Will Cluxton start?

Enda and Steven preview the Division 2 final between Dublin and Derry, and the lads also discuss the return of Stephen Cluxton

Enda and Steven preview the Division 2 final between Dublin and Derry, and the lads also discuss the return of Stephen Cluxton.

Former Mayo star Enda Varley feels that Stephen Cluxton can extend his career just as NFL legend Tom Brady did.

The latter collected seven Super Bowl rings over a star-studded 23-year career in American football, retiring in recent months at the age of 45.

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The former New England Patriots and Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback was never the most athletic of players, and ran a famously slow 40-yard dash at the combine ahead of the NFL draft in 2000.

Varley and Steven Poacher debated the merits of the Parnell netminder making his way back into the Dublin starting line-up after his recent recall to the squad.

“I don’t know about that,” says Varley when Poacher suggested Cluxton would not play. “He’ll play, 100%. Do you know why?

“I think Dessie is under pressure and he’s trying to squeeze one last All-Ireland out of this team before it’s too late.

“The young lads coming through aren’t of that same calibre and, don’t get me wrong, it’s hard to be of that same calibre because the team before them was one of the best in history — so that’s not a dig at them.

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“Look, Cluxton, the media really love to… he’s obviously not an outfield player, so it’s like Tom Brady playing at 45 here.

“His leadership, and he has to kick out the bloody ball here.

“It’s not like he’s up and down the pitch here, he could do this until he’s 55 if he wanted to.”

“It was startling, it was really surprising,” says Poacher of the Cluxton recall at the age of 41.

“Unquestionably from what you see, it’s very evident that when he was there, he was the on-field general and leader.

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“He was Jim Gavin’s commander-in-chief, and I would say even having his experience around the place, I don’t see it as a negative.

“A lot of people have pushed it as a negative, but they have a goalkeeping crisis.

“I would say he has come back from a mentor perspective, I don’t think he’s going to play. I’ll be shocked if he plays.”

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