Cavan manager Terry Hyland has confirmed to GAA.ie that Cavan midfielder Gearóid McKiernan is ruled out for the rest of the season after he damaged his cruciate knee ligament in a club game on Sunday.
He has been an inspiration there for Cavan for the last few years.
Terry Hyland on GearÃ³id McKiernan
McKiernan, 22, suffered the injury whilst playing for his club Swanlinbar and after a scan on Monday, it has been confirmed that he has suffered the dreaded cruciate ligament injury which has afflicted so many top sportsmen over the years.
"He had a scan on Monday and it has been confirmed that he has damaged his cruciate," Hyland told GAA.ie this morning.
"It's devastating for him personally because he had put in a massive effort and has done over the last couple of years. And when we look back on last year's league campaign, he's probably one of the only players that has played in every single minute of the league for us.
"He has been an inspiration there for Cavan for the last few years."
However, Hyland believes that very dedication and commitment for which McKiernan is known for will aid his prospects of a swift recovery.
"In fairness to Gearóid, he has a very good work ethic and we do kind of smile sometimes after training because he is one of the fellas that the kitman is always giving out about because when he goes to look for the footballs, Gearóid has gone off with them!
"So in fairness, he has a great work ethic and I've no doubt he will come back to be a top inter-county player."
The nature of cruciate ligament injuries mean that players tend to be out for at least a year with them, and Hyland admitted that was a realistic time frame for McKiernan's potential return.
"You're probably looking at the league next year if you want to be truthful about it. You're into April so by the time he gets seeing surgeons, gets procedures done, gets rehab and that, you're looking at next year's league," confirmed Hyland.
Cavan play Armagh in the Ulster Championship Preliminary Round on May 19.