Prayers were offered at Masses in Killybegs over the weekend for Seamus Coleman following the nightmare injury which has brought a sudden end to his season.
The Killybegs man is unlikely to play again this year after an horrific double-leg break sustained in Friday night’s World Cup qualifier against Wales at the Aviva Stadium.
Coleman was released from hospital yesterday as the battle towards recovery begins in earnest.
Killybegs Parish Priest, Fr. Colm O’Gallchóir, led prayers for Seamus at Masses on Saturday and Sunday, and said everyone in the town is hoping the player manages to make a full recovery.
“He’s such a popular person here and it was an awful injury that Seamus suffered while playing for and captaining his country,” Fr. Colm said.
“We prayed for him at the weekend, for a full recovery and a speedy return to action again.”
Fr. Colm, who is a friend of the Coleman family, and baptised Seamus and Rachel’s daughter Lilly last year, said the people of Killybegs were shocked at the extent of the player’s injury.
Seamus was brought to St. Vincent’s Hospital in Dublin after being stretchered from the pitch during the second half of Friday night’s World Cup qualifier against Wales.
He underwent surgery on Saturday morning and over the weekend, his Republic of Ireland manager, Martin O’Neill said the doctors and medical team were happy with how the operation had gone.
On Tuesday, Seamus was visited in St. Vincent’s by President Michael D Higgins while well wishes have been extended to the player from supporters, players and sports fans from all over.
Back in Killybegs, Malachy Murrin, the chairman of Coleman’s boyhood club, St. Catherine’s FC, said the player’s injury is all that anyone has been talking about this week.
“There’s a real feeling of concern and sincerity among people in the town because Seamus is so well liked and so popular,” he said.
“We all know how strong and positive a person Seamus is and we hope that he will come through this and come back a stronger and even better player.”
Meanwhile Ronald Koeman, Coleman's manager at Everton, has been high in his praise for the player.
"In all my years in football, Seamus is one of the best professionals I've ever worked with at any club," he said.
"His dedication to the game, his attitude and motivation are always where they should be and that's 100%, and he's like that in training every day as well as in games.
"That mentality will really be helpful to him now in not only coming to terms with what has happened but in setting out on the road to recovery and, over time, in him building himself once more to the level he has maintained over many years here at Everton. That strength of character will be a big, big thing."