Meath's ambitions for league, provincial and national success were dealt a major blow on Monday morning when star attacker Joe Sheridan emigrated to Boston in the USA.
As news broke around Pearse Stadium, Galway on Sunday of the Seneschalstown man's imminent departure many were shocked at the huge blow for Meath football, but the supporters were also surprised to see Sheridan take his place on the bench.
In fitting style Sheridan's parting gift was a controversial goal which threatened to spark a Royal recovery. However, Meath's efforts fell short and Sheridan's goal was in vain as Meath slumped to a narrow defeat.
In a statement released on Monday morning Sheridan revealed that the opportunity to take up employment in America was too much to turn down and it is believed that he will be joining the growing Irish community working in construction there.
"After a lot of thought I have decided to emigrate to take up an opportunity I simply couldn't refuse. I finalised my decision to travel on Friday last," said Sheridan.
"I would like to thank the Meath senior football management and the Meath Co Board who worked hard to secure employment for me, but I feel that this opportunity abroad is something I need to do.
"I would like to wish my team mates, club and county, the very best for 2012," concluded Sheridan's.
Sheridan's departure prompted some of his many friends to Twitter.
Seamus Kenny (@shamkenny80) - "Sad to have to wish @Squarecut84 (Joe Sheridan) all the best on his travels,massive loss to the panel and football in the county (and Eddie Rockets)!!"
Donal Keogan (@keogie_bear) - "best of luck and safe travels to @Squarecut84 on his journey state side! hope it works out for you! #topbloke #uptheroyals".
Brian Farrell (@Farlo84) - "An emotional farewell to our buddy @Squarecut84 last night #leavingonajetplane."
Jamie Queeney (@jamiequeeney) - "Best of luck @Squarecut84 in d US.goes to show you there are more important things in life than football #gaa won't pay the bills #topbloke."
Mark Ward (@markward9) - "Best of luck to Boston Beavers new linebacker @Squarecut84 on his big move. He'll be sorely missed #GoRedSox."
GPA official Dara McGarty (@DaraMcGarty) - "Best wishes to our top Meath rep @Squarecut84 heading to Boston today - safe travels Joe - Ull be missed by @gaelicplayers as well as Meath."