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Paul Mannion becomes the lates...
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Paul Mannion becomes the latest Dublin star to step away in 2021

Paul Mannion has decided to step away from the Dublin panel for 2021. 

The Kilmacud Crokes forward's decision continues a mini exodus from Dessie Farrell's panel ahead of the new season.

Earlier in the day Michael Darragh MacAuley decided to call time on a glittering dozen years with the Dubs. The 2013 Footballer of the Year left with eight All Ireland medals in his back pocket.

While last week, veteran Paddy Andrews also retired from the inter-county scene.

Mannion is still only 27, but was restricted to a substitute's role during Dublin's successful campaign for six-in-a-row.

He'd seen Paddy Small preferred by Farrel in the corner-forward role, but came on for the Ballymun Kickhams man midway through the final win over Mayo. It was a change Farrell made in all-but-one of their Championship outings.

Mannion helped Dublin see off James Horan's side in December with a point from a free.

But while the retirements of MacAuley and Andrews were no surprise, Mannion's decision to step away - albeit temporarily - will be a blow to Dublin boss Farrell.

It must be remembered, Mannion left the 2015 campaign behind to study in China and was welcomed back to the fold. With youth on his side, Dubs will be hoping he'll return once more.

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Dessie Farrell Dublin Michael Darragh Macauley Paddy Andrews Paul Mannion

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