Galway forward Michael Meehan has not ruled out a return to inter-county football if he can recover from an ankle injury which has plagued him for the last four years.
The 29-year old announced on Friday that he was opting out of the Galway squad for this year in an effort to finally sort out a debilitating injury to his left ankle.
He has had surgery a number of times in an effort to recover from it but weakening cartilage has compounded the problem and he believes the best thing at this stage is to take a break and try work his way back.
“It is frustrating and it is disappointing to have to step aside. I have managed it quite well over four years but I suppose each and every year you go on it gets more frustrating and harder but the nature of the injury which is there is that there is a serious bit of damage done to my ankle.
“It doesn’t play to any script. I played a lot of football last year but it took a lot out of the ankle.
“Where I am now at the minute it feels as if I am a long way away from getting anywhere near inter-county football so the best thing for me right now is to step aside and hopefully let things settle and maybe try and get back at a slower pace back to club football initially and if it goes well then we will see after that,” said the Caltra clubman in an interview with Galway Bay FM.
Meehan, whose brother Declan is a Galway selector this year, has not played for the Tribesmen since last year’s All-Ireland quarter-final loss to Cork in Croke Park, and feels that it is best for everyone if he detaches himself from the squad and tries to recover.
“The hardest part is not being able to play, not bring able to contribute yourself. It is much easier play a game than watch a game. You feel you can’t contribute and it is disappointing, especially the lads working hard and not everything going their way at the minute so if I thought I could be in a position to help them I would but it is too far away and after that I don’t really know so we will just see how it goes.
“There is structural damage done and I have had surgery two or three times on it at this stage and it is probably as repaired as much as it can at this stage so whatever else that can happen in terms of healing or time might improve it but there is certainly damage done that is irreparable at this stage,” added Meehan, who made his senior debut for Galway in 2003.