Real men wanted now!

The comment posted by PJ Monaghan on Friday concerning the management appointment fiasco struck a chord with readers. In this guest piece, PJ elaborates further on the issues raised in his comment and he also puts forward his proposals on what should happen now.

Ger Loughnane is a man who has uttered many famous quotes in the context of the GAA. The quote which is probably most relevant in the context of the current situation in Mayo was uttered in a dressing room at half-time during one of Clare’s great matches of the Nineties. When others spoke, Loughnane said nothing until players got up to leave the dressing room. He apparently stood in the door and looked each player in the eye and said the following: “Real Men wanted now”. Clare went on to win the match and as they say the rest is history.

Clare have proven that a county’s ambition should not end with winning just one All-Ireland. They have stood shoulder to shoulder with the greats of hurling and put down a real marker for what so-called second tier counties can achieve. Just look at their recent successes at both senior but more importantly at u21 level. Why can’t Mayo achieve the same? Is it because we don’t have Real Men?

If there was ever a time for real men and indeed real women to step up to the mark in Mayo it is now. The progress made over the last four years at senior level can be quickly undone and the team of players, the majority of which are currently the right side of thirty can very quickly end up the far side. Without doubt there is a significant risk that the best group of players Mayo has had since the 1950s will pass into history without achieving what they deserve and what we all crave.

Within two years we went from the lowest point in the recent history of Mayo GAA (Longford) to the highs of narrowly losing two All-Ireland finals. As much as progress was quick and joyful, regression can be equally quick as even more painful.

Reflecting on the events of the last week we really shouldn’t be surprised at the behaviour of the Officers, the Executive and the wider County Board. Not to mention the clubs for their lack of action at last Thursday night’s meeting. We are in this mess because the clubs have put those individuals in place and also kept them there. Until the clubs or the supporters do something to remove them we are in deep trouble.

What we should be surprised with and more importantly ashamed of is the fact that no-one is willing to call STOP or do something about it. Unfortunately this requires brave men and as of today only three exist in Mayo (Gerry Bourke, Michael Diskin and Michael Fitzmaurice). Those are the guys who have resigned and they deserve our support.

Mayo GAA is bigger than the County Board, the clubs, the players and the supporters. It is bigger than Noel and Pat or indeed Kevin and Liam.

The following is a quote from Liam Horan’s Strategic Plan:

“The love of the Green and Red is a defining characteristic of thousands upon thousands of Mayo people all over the world. Those thrilling colours stir something deep within us. We love the jersey, the history it embodies, the permanent prospect of sensation it offers. See it now in your mind’s eye – the rich, traditional Green, above the bold, unpredictable Red.”

I have lived in Dublin for the last 22 years but my roots are in the Iniskea Islands, Blacksod Bay and Ballyglass Lighthouse, all located in the Barony of Erris. Our two boys were born in Dublin but they embody the soul of Mayo. They have sat and cried in Croke Park when they watched their beloved Mayo get beaten by Dublin in the 2013 final. They suffered the pain of having to attend a Dublin school the next day, not to mention attending training at the local GAA club for weeks later.

What has happened over the last few weeks has sickened and maddened me to a point never reached before. To see my two boys suffer for their love of Mayo when our county is run by incompetent and gutless people has once again motivated me to put my hand up and say I am willing to join or lead a group to lobby for change in Mayo GAA.

In late 2010 and early 2011 I had the pleasure of working with Liam Horan in preparing the Strategic Action Plan. Within weeks it became apparent that we were all wasting our time. We all knew that it was going to be a car crash but people still kept going because we felt a duty to the county to at least put an alternative view into the public domain. What began with huge positivity ended on a huge low. As the dust settled I think we all felt we had done the county some justice. The Officers and the Executive had won the day and we all went back to our lives.

The success of the senior team over the last four years papered over the cracks and the same show continued at County Board level. Men with no vision and minimum values stood in dressing rooms with players of huge integrity and commitment and were made feel important as a consequence of the players’ efforts. I watched the Officers of our County walk the hallowed turf of Croke Park with men of the calibre of the O’Shea brothers, Cillian O’Connor, Keith Higgins, Colm Boyle and my own clubman Chris Barrett, to name just a few and all I felt was disgust. Players who we will look back on in 20+ years as some of the finest to ever wear a Mayo Jersey were providing these individuals with a platform that they didn’t deserve. I have listened to interviews by Cillian O’Connor on national TV and it makes me proud to say he is a Mayo man and then I listen to Paddy McNicholas and I want to hide in a corner for fear of someone saying – is he not from Mayo?

What a contradiction in the definition of a Mayo man! Hard to believe but yet so true.

For those who have never read Liam Horan’s Strategic Action Plan I would urge you to do so. It’s available in pdf form here.

The key recommendations  in the Plan may be summarised as follows:

  • Key recommendation 1 – Financial Review and formulation of five-year Financial Plan. Required because we didn’t trust the numbers or the people preparing them. Subsequently proved right when Croke Park put in the Administrators.
  • Key recommendation 2 – Non-executive Advisory Group. Required because we didn’t believe we could trust the Officers to run the affairs of the county in a professional manner. Do I need to give examples here??!!
  • Key recommendation 3 – Director of Football Coaching. As late as Thursday night Michael Fitzmaurice’s resignation supports why this position was required
  • Key recommendation 4 – Commercial Director. We were told that Croke Park would never allow it. Mossy Quinn is today the Commercial Director for Dublin GAA
  • Key recommendation 5 – Mayo GAA Brand. Just look at where it is today!!!
  • Key recommendation 6 – Mayo Gaelic Football Academy. As 3 above
  • Key recommendation 7 – Worldwide Mayo Supporters’ Club. They said it couldn’t be done but it is now required more than ever. As an aside Padraig Ó Ceidigh is now fronting this for Galway with the aim of raising € 500k per annum outside the County!

I need to state that I am not a voice for or against Noel and Pat or indeed Kevin and Liam. As a county we should have insisted on a process that was going to secure the best management team to take the Mayo senior team forward. Be that Noel and Pat, Kevin and Liam, Tony McEntee or indeed any other person who felt they could close with this group of players. We should have put an interview committee in place led by the likes of Kevin O’Neill and supported by managers who have won All-Irelands. Imagine an interview panel consisting of Kevin O’Neill, Liam Horan, Martin Carney, Pat Gilroy and Liam Sheedy?

Rather than using the word ‘continuity’ why not use words such as ‘improvement’, ‘excellence’, ‘success’ and most importantly ‘winning All-Irelands’?

Players should not have had a say in who got the job but they should have been part of the process. Their views are critical to a process as the selection committee needs to understand where they are at and try and match the best management team available with the needs and ambitions of the players. Surely we could trust the likes of Cillian O’Connor and Keith Higgins to engage in a process in the best interests of the Mayo senior team? We want leaders on the pitch so why not show the players some respect and ask for their views?

Noel and Pat were presented as the management team who would provide continuity and on Thursday last their appointment was ratified. As of Wednesday news leaked out that the medical team which is one of the main support structures for the senior team was not retained as by all accounts it costs too much. The Mayo medical team is viewed on a national level as one of the best. Just look at the evidence this year where they had all our best players available to play for Mayo. Today they are gone. Where does this decision sit in the context of words such as ‘continuity’ or more importantly where does it sit in the context of words such as ‘improvement’, ‘excellence’, ‘success’ and most importantly ‘winning All-Irelands’?

I would make one guess here that the main part of Kevin’s plan which was unacceptable was its cost. To put it simply Mayo GAA could not afford the professional set-up that Kevin would want and the Mayo senior team deserve. In my view any reference to Liam as a reason for not giving Kevin the job is a red herring and a distraction from the real facts.

On the matter of fundraising, the truth is that we could raise more money than we need in Mayo if we had the right people fundraising against the backdrop of a credible County Board and an appropriate Plan. Just ask yourself the following questions – are there 100 successful Mayo people who live outside the county who would give €5,000 a year to the Mayo GAA cause? Secondly are there 5,000 Mayo people who live outside the county who would give €100 a year to support the Mayo GAA cause? Then ask yourself about all the other modern methods of fundraising who could tap into the thousands of Mayo supporters? Finally ask yourself the question – why is this not happening? Funding should never be a reason to hold Mayo back and anyone who uses it as a reason should step aside.

Following my comment on this site of Friday last I would first like to thank all those who sent me supportive emails and who also posted supportive comments on the site. Without doubt there is sufficient numbers out there who are looking for change at the top in Mayo GAA and I think the time has arrived for the Mayo supporters to have their say.

This will not be an easy process and if anything the events of the last week has proven that the individuals at the top table in Mayo GAA will not go easy.

Like the players in Limerick let’s be prepared for every event, including extra-time but let’s on this occasion finish the job. Whatever we do let’s not give up.

In my opinion the process will involve three key steps, as follows:

Step 1 – The removal of all those Officers and members of the Executive who have supported the dreadful events of the last week. Let’s hope that many of the members who have not resigned to date will reflect again on what has happened and now do the decent thing and step aside. I would call on those individuals to step aside immediately and distance yourself from those who wish to remain. One by one they should fall.

Step 2 – Once the Officers and the Executive is removed we then need to reflect on the options available to us as a county. In many ways we are in a lucky position as the work done by Liam Horan’s Strategic Review Committee has provided us with a real alternative. The Plan is there, it just needs to be dusted down, updated and implemented.

Step 3 – The Mayo clubs should then put a new County Board in Place to implement the agreed Plan and take Mayo forward.

Step 1 will require direct action against the Officers and the remaining members of the Executive on a number of fronts:

  1. Early next week we will launch an online Petition seeking support from Supporters of Mayo GAA from all over the world to vote for the removal of all remaining Officers and remaining members of the Executive.

This petition will be promoted through all social and traditional media platforms and I would ask everyone to promote this petition to their family and friends so that all supporters are aware of the opportunity which will exist to allow them have their say.

Let’s remember that every vote is a positive act of support for the future of Mayo GAA.

The ongoing results of this petition will be sent to the key stakeholders of the County such as the Connacht Council, Croke Park and Elverys. These stakeholders need to feel the pulse of the supporters of Mayo GAA.

  1. If you know a member of the Executive on a personal level please approach them and ask them to resign.
  1. Every Supporter who has a connection to a club should lobby that club to put down a motion of no confidence in the remaining Officers and Executive members. They should also ask them to boycott future County Board meetings.
  1. Every supporter who knows a past Mayo player should ask them to sign the online petition and also ask them to make contact with local media sources to offer their support to the campaign.
  1. If you shop at Elverys you should make your feelings known. Post your views on their Facebook page so that they get the message. They have been a great supporter of Mayo GAA but their position on the events of the last week needs to be known. Surely they do not want their brand associated with such incompetence and dishonesty?
  1. If there is a group out there who is willing to attend the upcoming County Finals then please organise yourselves and arrange a demonstration.
  1. Local papers such as the Western People and the Mayo News need to make their views know – email them and ask them if they support the petition. Ask them to call for the removal of the remaining County Board Officers and Executives in their upcoming editions. Let’s remind them that a successful Mayo is good for their business, that’s why we buy their papers.
  1. Local radio needs to be contacted and their support needs to be secured. No different to the local papers a successful Mayo GAA is good to their business model.

This is a significant opportunity for the supporters of Mayo GAA to have their say and effect change in how the affairs of Mayo GAA are managed so I call on every supporter of Mayo GAA, no matter where you are in the world to do your bit to strike a positive blow for the future of Mayo GAA.

Originally from Blacksod, Belmullet, PJ Monaghan now lives in Malahide, Co. Dublin. He played for Mayo at various levels from U16 through to senior between 1988 and 1994 and played club football with Belmullet and Civil Service, Dublin. He chaired the Finance and Funding Subcommittee of the Mayo GAA Strategic  Action Plan, 2011. PJ is contactable at [email protected]

158 thoughts on “Real men wanted now!

  1. Well we have got our first “Real Man”. Well done to my neighbour from over the hill at home.

    PJ gives us two choices. Stick with the dysfunctional rubbish of the last sixty years or once and for all give the excellent Mayo players a framework to match the counties undoubted talent.

    If that means removing those that have tried but come up short, then so be it. Mayo football is NOT the preserve of a single group of people, be they a county board, managers or players. Mayo belongs to us all.

    I was present the night the Mayo
    Strategic Review was presented to the county board. I recall the chairman stating that the report “would be rejected or accepted” by the clubs. I don’t know what happened to the Review, it seemed to vanish.

    Like a ghost it comes back to remind and haunt. It hasn’t gone away. Now is the time to stand up for OUR county. I for one am with you PJ, you have done your county some service. Thank you.

  2. Also an exile, one who could hardly have been be further from PJ and still a Mayoman.
    I’m in.
    Plenty of time to demolish and rebuild fit for purpose.
    Beats whinging about what we can not control

  3. I’d be slightly concerned here. we have a very good panel of players at present . The Paddy Mc saga of events were horrible but i’m not sure it is exactly you want to do here.

    To replace men , you need replacements , have ye got men lined up ? And would it not be just swapping like for like( a bit like FG for FF, same shite imo different name)

    The fundraising point is very valid and i know first hand there is frustration with Mayo people abroad over it. Mayo support is so huge , i dont think people realise.I remember being around north London one summer a few years ago, every game brought its crowds to the pubs and clubs showing the matches but when Mayo were playing, wow it was ten fold and a bigger number of informed ,passionate supporters whom would like to make a difference if it was sold to them in the right and transparent way.

  4. Agreed on all counts! Straight talking, and to the point! I think it should be clear aswell that it’s not a move to underline Noel Connellys and Pat Holmes positions?!

  5. this has to be one of the most patriotic pieces written about Mayo football. As an ordinary supporter, I fully support the actions described above. One thing that should be clear is that we stand behind Noel and Pat; they deserve that respect.

  6. I am just an ordinary working class Mayo supporter that travels the length and breadth of the county supporting Mayo teams count me in It’s time for change I will do anything I can to help

  7. Forgive me if I’m wrong but are we doomed for this year as each club has furnished its delegates & only that list can attend the next County board AGM-does that mean one more year of this circus?
    I know I’ll be “contesting” the role of our clubs county board delegate when it comes up again at our AGM

  8. Congratulations on reminding us all of reality! Reform of the Mayo CB will be a high mountain to climb but we should all support this rallying call!

  9. I’m all for this petition but with the following strings attached. I would echo other posts in that this has nothing to do with Noel and Pat. The other string is to do with who’s going to go in. I’m am full sure that there are a lot of genuine officers and members of the executive who would bleed green and red for the county and who could refill the positions vacated but only once they are in agreement and willing to implement fully the recommendations of Liam Horans Strategic review. Naturally, certain individuals at the top will have to go but if you give a new Invigorated County Board direction, purpose and the opportunity to excel.. then they will do so. The person at the top is crucial.. people won’t invest in someone they don’t trust.. What we need is a leader.. a face of the organisation.. someone who can hire a fire to get the job done.. some one who will reach out to the Mayo supporters and tell us what is happening.. to ask for help and ideas and not sit in room with closed doors.

  10. Well said PJ!! On the question who will replace them? Folk who are willing and capable of implementing the strategic plan, that’s who!

  11. That’s a great post PJ, well done. It’s an eye-opener for me over the last few days to read all the views of everyone on this saga. At times, it’s been hard to know what to post!
    I do see the point that that any further agitation at this point might be a further wobbler for Noel and Pat. However, it appears these problems are indeed deep-rooted, and if left as they are, chaos of last week will continue, so something really has to be done. It might be unsettling in the short-term but we just might have to live with that.
    I like the point made about the players and how their views could be included in some way. Cillian and Aido come to mind in particular this year. The way they have spoken has been fantastic and gives us supporters something to hold onto. This Mayo team in my view are continuing to develop in many ways, however, they need a driving, organised force behind them, not one that is going to stunt their growth or send them back a few years. I think most of us feel we have a special group of players at the moment, and the age profile is still very good. The right things should be done for them and for the future of football in the County. The time for reform might just be now.

  12. It’s a cultural change ye are looking at and that will be hard done , ridding Mayo of an attitude like ” them two Ballina townies can f’off with their radical shite” …it does exist.

    My comment has no bearing on who i would or wouldnt of preferred , im happy out wit the two lads that got the gig.

  13. I agree with a lot of things in the article. I think a few points are off the mark.

    – Going into Elverys – the staff members in the shops should not be involved in this. It is unfair to start putting pressure and essentially intimidating innocent people doing their jobs. Elverys have been unbelievable supporters off Mayo GAA. Anything Mayo have requested Elverys have delivered – top of the range gym, all the gear in the world, large vouchers for boots per player at least once per year.

    – On the whole County board fiasco – it proved that most members of the executive are out of their depths. The hurried press release, the chairmans statement – was a shambles and only self serving.This all indicates they were out of their depths and instead of swimming – sank.

    To those giving out about delegates and people not standing up at the meeting.
    – do not forget that before the county board meeting on Thursday there was a full executive meeting with no press were in attendance. There was also a meeting on the Monday night. It is now known that at least 5 or 6 members of the executive spoke out against the chairman and the shambles he oversaw. I am sure it was pointed out to them that they were damaging their reputation. But the penny obviously didn’t drop. So it was unlikely they were going to get anywhere at the County board meeting. The chairman failed to answer any questions put to him. There was no point to arguing and shouting in front of the press, creating yet more noise and national media attention on what should have been a great evening for Ray and Pat.

  14. Great post, the future has to be different and starts now.
    I’m in.
    I’m also in with the 100euro contribution once I am confident that there is financial transparency.
    MaighEo Abú

  15. Pj I couldn’t be prouder of you.How many have the guts to come out and say what you’ve just said. Finally the truth is spoken. How could the club delegates not have ousted the board last week? I heard he got a round of applause!!! We support you 100% pj, whatever is to be done….NOW is definitely the time.

  16. This is the kind of silly divisive talk that could end up hobbling mayo for a generation. Whats was done was done with subsequent acquiesce f4om the executive. Al lbof which are representative members of our clubs. These guys were all ratified at your club agm and that is where they can be deselecred. If you are not a club member then join up and get a vote. The GAA is a very democratic organisation make it work for your opinions. Mr monaghan was poorly treated by the CB but dont let his gripe encourage the bully boy tactics that is being proposed

  17. Yes PJ!! Yes!!! At last, some light at the end if the tunnel.

    The massive Mayo support and diaspora will follow you!

    This isn’t just about getting things ruth for the current team or 2015. This is about changing the landscape of how Mayo GAA is run. It’s been detrimental for years and our superb talent has on occasion broken through and excelled despite the glaring incompetence of the county board executive. Our current senior team and last years minors have indeed papered over the cracks.

    Root out the weeds! Bring back the Liam Horan paper…now let’s see some RADICAL change…all for Mayo football. Let’s be winners. PJ…lead the way, we will follow.

  18. I’m in with whatever support I can give.
    Regards your post, David Lydon, what do you mean by PJ Monaghan being very poorly treated by the Co Board? I’m in the dark about this but would, if it referred to me, have a very poor view of an allegation that I was motivated by personal issues on a matter like this.

    On the issue of fundraising, I was in Pairc Sean MacDiarmada in Carrick on Shannon a couple of years ago where they have a big plaque on the wall of their new stand outlining “the teams who built the stand”. I was told that those on the Gold teams contributed €25k each, those on the Silver teams €10k, those on the Bronze teams €5k and those on the white teams €1k. Together they provided most of the cash for a €3 million stand. If Leitrim could do that what should Mayo be able to do? In addition they obtained a substantial contribution for the naming rights to the stand for a 10 year period. What options have Mayo explored for the naming rights to the stand, for the naming rights to the old “Albany End” or the old “Bacon Factory End”?

    On the issue of real men being needed on the team,a la Ger Loughnane and Clare, if we expect real men to lead on the field is it realistic to expect them to stand back and accept whatever shit is thrown at them by the County Board whether in terms of team management, medical care or any other aspect of their involvement with the Mayo team? We need more Sean Flanagan’s to stand up to the County Board with regard to all aspects of team affairs. If they don’t do it off the field they certainly will not do it on the field. The responsibility has to rest with the senior members of the panel with the support of all the established players as with Cork hurlers of the past decade or so.

  19. Excellent commentary and action plan PJ. I’m in, social media blitz along wit local newspaper editorials is the way to go. This is now a campaign!

  20. Carpe diem! I’m in PJ

    You speak the truth and with passion.

    My only suggestion is that aby petition/movement must have credibility. Real names, email address backup to stop the trolls

  21. Personally I think this county board should now fall on its sword.

    1 unprofessional fund raising during a period when the team were a massively marketable quantity.
    2 removal of the medical team , presumably through lack of funding
    3 the amount of people on a freebie to New York when supporters paid thousands for this trip
    4 the treatment of the supporters in New York
    5 the negative press stemming from the New York trip
    6 the lack of information given to James Horan about the fact that a draw in Croke park would result in a replay in limerick
    7 the lack of response to Liam oneill
    8 the lack of a strenuous objection when it immediately became known that limerick was on the cards( this was long before the game I understand)

    This is only the past few months!!

    Prior to this there were issues with chairde mhaigheo ticketing, James Horan had issues, machale park debt is still a massive issue.

    In any other country there would be resignations and sackings , in Ireland it seems that the people who complain about the status quo have to resign.

  22. PJ Fully behind you. On the fundraising side of things could you not start and when you have a substantial sum collected you would have some more clout

  23. Excellent article.

    Something has to change. I want no part in anything that board puts forward at the moment. They now have no legitimacy and should step aside for the good of the county. Sadly I doubt that’s the reason many of them are in situ.

  24. Taken from the strategic plan drafted in 2011 –

    “The inadequacy of the information provided by Mayo County Board made it very difficult for our Finance & Funding committee to carry out a proper review. Virtually all of the information we received was already in the public domain and did not help our committee in any significant manner.”

    Disgraceful lack of transparency. This has to stop.

  25. Inspiring piece PJ. You have my support. I think contacting Sponsors like Elvery’s is key to getting some leverage on this.

  26. Well Said P.J. Mayo supporters need to have their voice heard on this debacle, immediate action is required before the CB allows the dust to settle o this – count me in!

  27. Well said PJ.

    However there is only one way this will work. Someone has to form a 4 to 5 core group that will organise and chase this down. You need an organiser and high profiles figures backing it up. Someone has to lead this. Otherwise the petition is pretty worthless. Mayo people want change but you need someone to lead the change.

  28. “Comet the hour”.
    As supporters this is now our chance to do more than just shout and wave flags. We might have to suffer some short term pain for this to work but the gains will be felt for generations. I would suggest a boycott by Cairde members until the executive resigns and the Horan plan is revisited.

  29. “Divisive” says a poster above. The only division in this county has been fermented and kept in train by a mainly anonymous group of grey men who wield frightening power.

    As a huge county full of talent, full of bright people, this cabal , this wheels within wheels has embarrassed us, held us back and run scared when we needed men to stand for the Green and Red.

    I was a member under Liam Horan and PJ Monsghans Strategic Review Committee . We were on the Finance Committee. Whilst I was a foot soldier , a water carrier , others were pullers of society and influence.

    Amongst that committee were Tom Mitchell first catholic provost of Trinity College, Mary Davis presidential candidate, John Gumnigan Mayogaablog.com , BJ Padden, Kevin O Neill and businessmen and accountants of the highest order.

    In other words professionals dealt in a professional manner. Alas our body of work was handed over to amateurs. They simply pulled a line through the Galway version , wrote in Mayo and damned good men’s work.

    Dublin put in motion the Blue Wave that same year. They put in place a commercial manager Tomas Quinn. They landed massive sponsorship after sponsorship. But more important , they ran their board businesslike and transparent. Result ? 2 Senior All Irelands, 2 National leagues, 2 U21s and 1 Minor.

    Us? Our board couldn’t organise a flight from Knock to Heathrow in 2011. Says it all. So PJs call call to arms has to succeed, the alternative is not fit for purpose.

  30. The removal of McNicholas as co. will not suffice anymore, the updating and implementation of the Horan plan is now a must.

  31. Is there still a chance of a no confidence vote on the chairman.?

    I think Liam is right need to look at the whole picture now and try and try get proper structures in place.
    If this was done I dont think we would have these ongoing issues that keep coming up year after year.

  32. PJ. This is a big request. I am not questioning your motives but it is a massive step to ask dedicated club men to leave behind all of the connections that they have build up over many years of battle. Easier from the comfort of Clondalkin or wherever. Unlikely to bump into people that you have set yourself against. People who have dedicated their life to football, to Mayo (albeit they may be completely wrong). It will take some persuading to convince people to join your crusade. It will take a massive leap of faith to leave behind what you are familiar with to join a group that have no experience in the cut throat world of sports politics. Are there enough people in this new set up to put in the amazing amount of hours needed to run a counties GAA affairs. I was involved at committee level with my club and tracked all of my time. I calculated that I spent 23 hours a week on average on club affairs and this is just a club. Have you enough volunteers to commit to this amount of time. Have you sat down and gone through the people and the figures to see if this is possible. Before smashing an existing set up make sure the alternative is a better option. I, myself, will await developments before committing to this new movement. I would need more assurances and more concrete plans. Best of luck PJ.

  33. I believe the above is essentially a rant and an example of how some Mayo supporters go way over the top when something bad occurs, same as they go over the top when a big victory comes around.

    The county board made a mess of the new managerial appointment but they made a very good appointment in the end. No doubt the CB could do with some youth and a more business-like approach, but so could the GAA administration as a whole. Nobody dreams of being a CB member, same way as nobody dreams of being a politician. They are hard jobs, that rarely attract the best people.

  34. The county board didn’t make the correct choice by design but by accident. The people here saying that things are alright are not involved with underage football in the county. This is not an overreaction but a long festering illness that has finally become terminal.

  35. GBXI there are millions of reasons why the CB need to consider their position. The redevelopment of McHale Park has held back the development of teams, and all this continues through to the present mess. All this before you even consider on pitch structures.

  36. AndyD ,
    PJ monaghan worked with Liam horan on the Strategic Action Plan of mayo football (as i believe chief blogger Willie Joe and other contributors here who have not acknowledegd the fact ). which was a massive effort but it was not taken up by the county board.
    whether you like they report or not it was up to the county board to decide to accept it or not as they would be the people to implement it at the end of the Day and be respondsible for its sucess or failure . also the group refused to work with the county board unless they go 100% oftheir own way .
    There seems to a lot of residual bitterness due to this and Battle lines have been drawn
    dont get me wrong the county board chairmans actions were ridiculess and he does not appear fit to hold off but it must be donr by due process and not by boycotts which will just end up hurting all mayo Football at every level.

  37. Stirring words and not ones to be ignored. clear from most comments that the good of mayo football is the only agenda here!

  38. I fully supported the strategic plan, which was launched by Liam Horan and his crew. A shame it wasn’t put into action.
    While everyone wants Mayo to push on and win Sam Maguire, it’s a shame that this been seen as the be all and end all by some. Mayo GAA is a lot more than the senior football team. They may be the pinical of the game but there’s a lot more than them involved in it. Supporting Mayo GAA financialy is not just about putting all our money into one team. There are lots of other teams that should get proper funding to develop, the senior and underage hurlers in the county are as important and represent the county with as much pride as any senior footballer, for example.
    The GAA isn’t just one game or team, and that should not get lost in this whole process and shambles that’s going on.
    Change is needed, no doubt about that. But if it is to come, it’s up to ordinary club members to do so, vote at your AGM, run for positions in your club executive, direct your club delegate to say what your club executive feel. Change can come.

  39. How would propose we affect change David? If you are dealing with people who are driven by self preservation first and foremost how do you persuade them to do what’s good for others? Due process had its chance last Thursday night and failed. Boycotting was first created in our great county over 130 years ago, it worked then and will work now.
    Short term pain for long term gain.

  40. I am fully supportive of PJ’s constructive initiative and I am also fully supportive of every member of the current playing and management team,however we have ample evidence of the brokenness of the administration of Gaelic football in Mayo.

    The strategic review and plan makes a lot of sense to an ordinary supporter like me especially in the area of finance and coaching.
    It is clear that the current administration do not have the appetite or aptitude necessary to adopt and implement a plan, which would in the right hands propel this county forward by harnessing the massive goodwill available nationally and internationally.
    Let us not be governed by fear. Fear will keep us where we are; frustrated ,helpless, lashing out at perceived wrongdoers. Of course there will be consequences if we use the weapons available to us which are limited to us being supporters.By cancelling memberships of clubs, cairde tickets ,match attendance, we have the potential to cause financial hurt. By lobbying sponsors, media etc we have the potential to have spotlight shining on us, a county with a brittle self image. If we are afraid we will shy away from those acts ” youll damage your club,” kerry are laughing at us ” will be used to stop the revolution. We must now decide what we want each man and woman step forward if you wish to be an agent for change and progress. To not do so is to continue enabling the current system, where for instance a club selects an officer to be co board delegate for 5 yrs,and from last Thursday we have some idea of the appetite for accountability and truth there exists in that group.
    Accepting that not everyone will be behind this initiative, its discouraging to read a poster suggesting that it is prompted by personal grievance.
    I have no agenda here with any member of any board and even if I did that shouldn’t preclude me from working towards renewal, the leaders of the 1916 rising were called tramps and corner-boys by a sizable section of the people they were trying to liberate!
    Hopefully nobody will die ..feel the fear and do it anyway!
    Maigh-eo Abú

  41. well done PJ this is what i meant when i said we need to act now i’m in and will be in contact .GBXI to discribe PJ’s fine accessment and plan as a rant is remarkable he has the support of genuine understaning MAYO SUPPORTERS.as to MAYO SUPPORTERS going over the top. there is only one victory MAYO SUPPORTERS want and yes when it happens we will GO OVER THE TOP.

  42. GBXI
    Totally agreed that the county board made a good appointment in the end but after Paddy McNicholas and co had decided they didn’t for whatever reason want Kevin and Liam what choice had they but to appoint Pat and Noel.Its not like people were lining up to take over from JH.Im not for one minute saying Noel and Pat shouldn’t have got the job and I will be 100% behind them but the question we must ask is why was there little or no interest for the job?Was it the fact that Kevin declared his interest that others thought he was a dead cert and didn’t bother,was it a case that other likely candidates wouldn’t work with the current county board,after all they proved with Limerick and O’Neill that they wouldn’t back their manager.From travel arrangements,Limerick,O’Neill,Reilly to the simple selection and interview process of selecting a new manager they have failed and fucked up in every aspect of the job and they must go and go now.Chances are come December they will be gone anyway but if left there till they will have got their way,they will have won.Its time now for clubs to stand behind the supporters and put the best people possible forward for county board positions.We have the players now to win an all Ireland,we need the best possible structure behind them

  43. PJ,

    I just want to compliment you on a well polished article on the mayogaablog webpage.

    It stirred a lot of emotion within me as a supporter.

    I too have suffered as a supporter, 7 all Ireland defeats on the way to the holy grail.

    I’m an Achill man, but have been in Dublin for the last 10 years.

    I really hope this county board is thrown out, and a newly elected board who have the best interests of Mayo Gaa at heart and for landing Sam back to Castlebar on the 3rd week of September.

  44. PJ,

    Once again I want to thank you for taking a stand against the cabal in our county board. I fully support any and all actions that you take to remove the cancer from within Mayo GAA. I also want to thank you on behalf of all the future Mayo supporters and players who will benefit from this action.

    Regards,
    Liam

  45. Great piece PJ.
    I have contacted the Mayo county board looking for these individuals resignations and i have also being in touch with the local papers to get behind the supporters in getting rid of these fellas.Any petition that gets launched my name will be added to it along with any further protests that need to be done to get the job done.

  46. This is all well and good but there isnt a hope of any of this being implemented. You are going to have to have a concerted campaign in every club to get delegates elected who share your ideas. That is simply not going to happen. I would hazard a guess that many of the above posers are not eve club members.

  47. So who is going to be part of the new board? Who is going to give up huge, HUGE chunks of their spare time?

    If you don’t have them already, then be careful. Talk is cheap (not referring to your post PJ!!), and people can and are all talk. I have experienced this first hand, on more the a couple of occassions.

  48. This is a serious post, PJ, and a serious call to arms. For that alone, you are to be commended.

    There’s absolutely no doubt in the world that the strategic plan is excellent and makes all the sense in the world, and I would be strongly in favour of getting it implemented immediately. There is no time like the present to start building for the future, and it feels like we are at a critical juncture in the history of Mayo football.

    But we do also have to bear in mind that we currently have an excellent team of footballers in place, and we must be mindful of their situation, and give them every chance of continued success. Continuity is critical in one way (and on that note, getting rid of our current medical team is also a scandal (I would be interested to know how that process unfolded, too – was there consultation within the board, with the medical team prior to their being told to pack their bags, or was it a stroke of the treasurer’s pen? Does anyone know?) However there is no reason to start putting in place radical overhauls of things like finance, fundraising, marketing, and critically, underage structures and start building a strong future for ourselves.

    And these things take time, dedication, resource and commitment. How many posters here rowing in behind this idea are willing to dedicate that time, unpaid, and unthanked? It’s one thing to be part of the revolution, but quite another to stand up and be part of the solution. Using myself as example, I’m all in favour of revolution, but would have very little to offer the solution. Don’t get me wrong – I would love to dedicate that time and effort, and would kill to be in a position to do so, but know I wouldn’t be in a position, personally at this point in time due to work and other commitments. How many of you would be?

    So for those reasons, I’m very much in agreement with Sinabhuil on this one. While I am absolutely in agreement on the sentiment of PJ’s post above, and strongly agree like other posters that change is desperately needed, we need to take stock and put some plans in place before progressing. What exactly are the next steps? What exactly will the process be once you’ve achieved the objective of getting the current board out? How long with the “reflection” process take, what will it involve, and in the meantime, who steers the ship in those critical first few months of Noel and Pat’s leadership?

    When you do look at restructuring, will it simply be a case of replacing the current board with new delegates from the same clubs? That has massive political implications for clubs, as many of you will know, being involved at ground level and co-operation within clubs. Will the board remain the sole preserve of club delegates, or will there be some innovation in terms of structure? Will team management (at all levels) have an input? Will there be any input from supporters? Either those inside the county, or those based outside the county, or abroad, who may for one reason or another no longer be affiliated to clubs, but may be Cairde Mhaigh Eo ticket holders, for example? Will there be any outside input – someone who is not involved with Mayo football in any way, to bring a cold eye to proceedings What kind of structures will be put in place to demonstrate 100% transparency? Who, once the board is gone, is leading the charge and making the decisions? Is it you, PJ, is it the writers of the excellent strategic plan, is it a group of 15-20 from here?

    There are a lot of questions there. Forgive me if I’m sounding negative, but I’m just cautious – this is a massive step to take, and I am all for taking it, but only if we know we are bringing Mayo to a better place, and that we have the structures in place to do so.

  49. MikeyBhoy
    I would hazard another guess that a lot of the shite we are in is down to the clubs.They had their chance last week to get them out but they would not do it.Clubs do not want to rock the boat.There are plenty good men in clubs all over this county as there is in my own club who are well capable of doing what’s needed at county board level if given the chance but as I said clubs do not want to rock the boat so they send in yes men who will go with whatever is happening.Maybe if clubs put the right men forward there would not be any boat to rock.

  50. Mikeybhoy clubs are just one stakeholder in this , the purchaser of the season ticket , the chairde ticket , the county jersey and the club jersey are people who deserve a say as they contribute massively to the revenue streams

  51. Whoops, just noticed a typo above – obviously what I meant to say is that there is no reason NOT to start putting in place radical overhauls of certain things etc. etc …

  52. Exactly Pacar, and clubs arent going to send delegates to county board who are looking to cause major upheaval etc, So how do ye intend to proceed is what i was asking?

  53. PJ I think a core group of people are needed. Look at every executive officer. Find an alternative, and if the Chairman, the Treasurer, the Secretary, the PRO and the Training Officer that formed the interview committee, held the phantom meeting, put the laughable process in place, do not resign….. mark them. Like Ger Loughnane had Len Gaynor marked when Clare and Tipp played in 1997. What I mean is have an option to stand against each of them. A shadow cabinet of sort, ready to stand for election at the AGM, whenever that might be.

  54. ‘Clubs aren’t going to send delegates to county board who are looking to cause major upheaval’. Correct …. but they are going to have to send delegates that support Liam Horan’s Strategic Plan & who are willing to adopt the plan & implement it. This is the red line issue. It’s not like Liam Horan’s Report is ‘major upheaval’ … it’s just common sense.
    If you can’t support & implement the Plan then you have to step down from whatever blocking position you hold in the county board & have your place taken by believers.
    If the clubs don’t co-operate then the clubs too will have to feel pain. Up to now the balance was in favour of opposing the Strategic Plan & maintaining the status quo.
    I feel we may be about to reach a tipping point.

  55. In reality, the foundations that everything that everyone on here has been enthusiastic about since PJ’s post is going to be build on has to be better fund raising – something as simple as allowing people to set up a direct debit of a tenner a month could make a huge difference, particularly if you make it easy for someone to do.

    Once you show that you would be able to raise the funds, then everything else becomes possible and conversely, if you can’t raise the funds to the extent that you hoped, then you aren’t going to be able to put the same systems in place.

    This has to be the main focus of any changes we’re trying to achieve.

    I’m all for getting rid of the current CB after the shambles we’ve seen over the past couple of weeks, but if I had a choice of getting proper coaching and underage structures in place now without resignations or a long fight for resignations without any other developments I know which I would pick.

    Put simply, the focus of any campaign should be to improve Mayo GAA in both the short and the long term. This is the only thing that really matters and the fact that the current CB members can’t implement this is the main reason for them to resign – great footballers deserve a great county board.

  56. So what do we do? Nothing? Leave everything as is? Walk away from this latest shambles? Hope that things will sort themselves out? If things don’t change then nothing changes, it’s as simple as that.
    Our county teams, hurling and football (incld Ladies) deserve better than this and if we don’t act now then before long we will be like Galway, only without the All Irelands. As far as I’m concerned we let our team down in last years All Ireland final when, after Andy scored his goal, we should have shook the Hogan Stand to its very foundations. Instead it was strangely subdued. When our lads needed a huge lift on the field with 10 minutes to go we weren’t there for them. No-one will convince me otherwise of that. Now is our time to repay that debt by forcing the changes at administrative levels to provide all the tools our teams need to be successful. Travel, training, medical, compensation when out of pocket or missing work through injury, boots, gear, diesel, cars, holidays, training camps, pre-hab, re-hab, food and nutritional advice, every little thing that might make up the last few inches that make the difference between winning and losing.
    This mess is just the latest in a list of incompetence from our county board. From the hugely overpriced stand in MacHale Park (a cantilever option was cheaper!), to the total disregard displayed towards the McHale Road residents during the planning and construction of the development (including the Longkesh style press box built without planning permission), from the inability to book flights from Knock to London, to the logistical disaster that was New York, from the lack of transparency when publishing financial accounts (making the MacHale Park development look more and more like a money-spinner for all concerned from design to planning to construction), to the inability to tell O’Neill to shut his fucking mouth and treat us with the respect that we deserve.
    I advise everyone that has Mayo GAA at heart to read Michael Gallaghers piece in todays Western. It sums it up far better than I could hope to.
    P.J., as I said in my email to you, I’m in.

  57. Regardless of the behavior of the CB and it would seem from a distance that they have a lot to answer for to put it mildly, I would expect the new management to believe that they can handle the situation and do their job. They cannot be moving ahead in the hope that it will all sort itself out. They must believe that they can work around whatever issues there are to
    get the job done. There must be a part of their package that covers that. Given their much touted local knowledge of the Mayo scene, they can be under no illusions.

  58. @Liam
    I am not going to propose any one trick solution nor and i going to condemn all that has happened in Mayo GAA circles in the last number of years there are many many plus points our senior team is at its strongest since the 1950’s ,the minor championship was won just over 12 months ago. Our clubs are very compeditive at a national stage .
    despite emmigraton most clubs are still going strong , we have one of the best Stadiums out side croke park , Finance is always going to be a problem that just shows ambition.

    But what is happening is every whinge mayo suppoters have had for the last 10 years is coming out and being put under the umbrella.
    so what happens if the board at present resigns enmasse. who will replace them. where Would they get their authority from .
    up to now it has been the clubs the Constituent part of the GAA. Do people want to change this? if so what Mayo supporters if so is the 500 supporters that attend FBD games or the 30000 that go to croke park if the weather is good.

  59. Understandably there is some fear of the unknown among supporters and club members. I doubt very much the wheels will fall off the underage coaching, player development, club activities or indeed finances if the the current CB LT were to resign.
    The strategic plan is exactly that, a strategic plan, a planb to “boil the ocean”. Many agree its implementation is needed. However for it to gain any traction, the excisting CB LT need to be removed. That is not a strategic goal, thats tactical and most likely more achievable in the short term.

  60. Agreed David. Nobody has outlined where these new officers are going to come from, who is going to propose them, vote them in. Oh and this is after ye have somehow managed to get rid of the present executive.

    Joey, they DO NOT HAVE O to send delegates who support the plan and they wont,

    @Roger Milla thats all well and good, but they dont have any power if they are not members

  61. I think the vast majority are in agreement that something needs to be done.
    The questions now are what exactly that is, over and above removing the county board) and who is going to do it.

  62. Anne-Marie, how are ye going to remove the county board exactly? I’m genuinely puzzled by all this as no one has outlined the process this will involve.

  63. Ye? This isn’t my post, MikeyBhoy, or my plan, and I have plenty of questions, as outlined above. PJ has outlined what he thinks it will involve, so best to direct questions to him, I think.

  64. There is a difference between ambition and recklessness David.
    Building a stand that financially cripples you for a generation doesn’t fall under the category of ambition.
    After four of the best years the county has ever had we are cutting back on spending when everyone else is spending more.
    Having a biscuit tin at the door of a pub in NYC is not ambitious.
    Getting rid of one of the best medical teams in the country is not ambitious.
    It’s all well and good being competitive, but I’m kind of sick of being just competitive, I’d like to start winning.

  65. Curious David Lydon about how you arrive at a conclusion that PJ Monaghan was treated poorly by County Board? My recollection as a member of PJs sub committee was that a professional report was submitted . After that our work as a committee ceased .

    You know seem to have have an idea that the county board focused on PJ Monaghan, the Strategic Review encompassed 100s of people. Also Mr Monaghan doesn’t have a gripe with the county board. Like a large section of mayo supporters he wants a professional set up to match the calibre of player the county produces. That’s not divisive , that’s s basic requirement .

  66. The question is do we need “real men” or in the words of GB Shaw “unreasonable men”?

    “The reasonable man adapts himself to the conditions that surround him… The unreasonable man adapts surrounding conditions to himself… All progress depends on the unreasonable man.”

    IMO, we need more of the latter.

  67. I’v read the Strategic Review long before the current problems and it’s core actions are mainly well researched common sense. As was stated previously some serious research, consultation and expertise was applied in the strategic reviews creation.
    Just two core parts of it for example.
    (1) Five year financial plan – with associated Director of Finance (This would allow the proper channeling of communication to/from the global Mayo supporters base.)

    Under current county board Finance is a self inflicted disaster. Mainly due to the construction of the stand in McHale Park. The ongoing money required to finance this was surely visible from the beginning. It’s not a case where it is 20 – 30% more than we can handle. Croke Park has stepped in already to bail us out with cash for which we pay back interest. My understanding is we’re simply repaying 400k a year in interest. I’v yet to see otherwise that we’re paying back the capital and in control of situation with regards to the stand debt.
    A biscuit tin at the door of a function in New York is not good enough. Peoples appetite for golf fundraisers and other efforts will now be diminished. Also it is now undeniable that repayment of debt for a stand is prime focus of fundraising.

    Mayo had one of the best medical teams of any sporting organization in British Isles. Liam Moffat operating with the Mayo injury clinic is a level of preparation that some Olympians might not enjoy. Gaelic Football is a high impact/high injury % sport. It seems the case now that we’ve taken that away this because of repayments for a stand. We are going to hurt our ability to raise finance by hurting our likelihood of on-pitch success.

    (2) Mayo Academy – with associated Director of Coaching.
    Michael Fitzmaurice one of the coaches in the Academy resigned two weeks ago citing disillusion with how Academy was operating. I’m sure he is competent in what he does. We don’t need detailed reviews?
    – One of the coaches has resigned
    – The feed into u21 is not operating otherwise the u21 manager would not have been allowed select four ex-minors from 2013 panel as his centre back/two midfielders/centre forward.

    If the Academy was operating it shouldn’t be the case of having a midfield diamond consisting only of 2013 minors at u21 level. The 20/21 year olds would be more physical and be improved by the Academy which started November 2012.
    Link below:
    http://www.mayonews.ie/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=17653:the-mayo-gaa-academy-six-months-on&catid=14&Itemid=100008

  68. MikeyBhoy, “how are ye going to remove the county board exactly?”
    By instructing all the clubs to vote only for “pro-strategy or pro-change” candidates. Let’s be fair, there are bound to be more honest, decent members of the county board/executive like Diskin and Bourke, not to mention club delegates like Prendergast and Butler. For whatever reason they have gone to ground. We are in danger of tarring them all with the one brush and maybe discarding every single one of them is not the correct thing to do. Some of them will be politically savvy, and that is required, but we need to know where each of them stands on the strategy issue and their willingness to implement the change that is not only needed but demanded by a growing groundswell of supporters. Lobby and instruct our club delegates prior to the next county board elections and get the correct men in. Did I hear that the current term is nearly up? If they are not gone before their terms end, we must make sure the weeds are removed before the get re-elected.
    The UCI had a similar issue with Pat McQuaid and after years of mismangement and cloak-and-dagger politics they got him out and now the organisation is leading the change in transparency and lack of egotisim.

  69. @pebblesmeller Who is going to instruct clubs who to vote for? Good luck with that. It isnt going to happen, any change will only come from within and the present board when replaced will be replaced by people from within the system

  70. Anne-Marie I’m glad you cleared that one up, in an otherwise excellent post the omission of NOT left me scratching my head – thought you were a CB spokesperson there for a minute 🙂

  71. PJ
    Having read your article on the county board I am delighted that you have put forward this opportunity for the real Gaa people of Mayo to let those individuals who purport themselves to represent Mayo Gaa know exactly what the true feelings are.

    I represent one of those companies that has written a cheque to the county board each year and to date have not had an issue doing so but this year I will not write any cheque until something changes at the top.

    We have the opportunity to push forward and cross that line with the quality of players we have but we have a county board who seem to want to do everything in their power to prevent this happening. God forbid we invest in this group of players, Jesus if we did we might even win an AI.

    I feel the people of Mayo need someone to stand up and say enough is enough and I really hope this is the start of it. I will offer any support to this cause that I can give.

    Like you say there are Mayo people all over the country/world who would gladly “invest” in Mayo Gaa if it meant the money went to the players and the support structure that they require (including a great medical team that know these players inside out). I am sure there are many out there like myself who have always been concerned that too much of the money was going to county board party junket. London 4 years ago, New York etc etc.

    To conclude PJ thank you for making your stance, I have no doubt the people on the ground will row in behind the campaign and let’s make sure this makes a difference.

    Well done.

  72. I repeat or explain my earlier post. Nobody of any near involvement in the existing set up is going to be involved in a huge heave until such time as alternative plans are in place. You will need some involvement from existing volunteers in order for this to work. As Ann-Marie has stated everyone wants to be involved in the revolution but no body wants to be involved in the solution. Until such time as a proper alternative is offered all this will be mere hot air and chest thumping. Maybe PJ has a plan that will eventually be made known. Where are the men that will put in the 40 hours a week. Will these also be old grey haired men? Do younger volunteers have the time for this? I hope so. Again best of luck PJ.

  73. Show us your hand, have a meeting before the club final and explain what it is we need to do face to face, i dont know about venue, maybe the TF or somewhere like that.

  74. Meet right outside McHale park. Simple mandate calling for Paddy McNicholas to resign and for the immediate implementation of Finance part of Strategic Review.
    Furthermore the release of all financial info which was held from strategic review group. In particular the proposal concerning the construction of the stand. If it cost several million less and Mayo Gaa had raised 15 % more over last few years the figures still don’t work. Still we can’t afford it. So on what basis could it possibly have been approved. The line of “We underestimated costs/fundraising” still is not true. No project for example should rely on a big rampup in fundraising. Mayo gaa fans already have been digging deep for years.

  75. It shows the mentality involved in
    the county board when they scrapped
    the report that P.J. Monaghan helped compile. They were and are living in the dark ages.
    We need a root and branch overhaul and that entails the exit of the current board and putting in place good men that are wanted now.
    We have become the laughing stocks
    of the country.
    We need to learn from the past and build for the future.
    Mayo fans are the best in the country
    They will put their hands in their pockets provided there is a professional approach and the right people in charge. We have a team that I have no doubt have the ability to bring Sam to Mayo, we need to give them every financial support possible.
    This does not entail collecting funds in the states using a cardboard box and ignoring the people who put their hands in their pockets and were ignored by the county board.
    I feel the new management have the qualities required to deliver and I wish them all the best

  76. Do you think our CB lack ambition? Surely they strive for the same thing we do as supporters but i truly believe they dont tap into the potential from abroad. The story from the US this year , a hat or case or whatever it was they were collecting money with , sounds bloody ridiculous , it actually sounds more like a 1970s IRA fundraiser in America.

  77. I want to know why there was no vote of confidence in the county board last Thursday night. An apology for the farcical behavoiur in the selection of the team management is not acceptable. I urge club members to contact your club chairman and County board delegate and ask them to truly represent you and your views at County board level. Don’t let this opportunity for positive change go and do so now.

  78. Lord only knows what James Horan had to put up with. Its a miracle he managed to bring us to the heights that he did. I have a new found admiration for him in light of all this.
    PJ for County Board Chairman….???

  79. I don’t think they lack ambition Sean…they want the same thing as we all do, but lack the vision, capability and know-how, to make it happen.

    Its probably difficult for many on the CB to accept. Its not easy to admit one’s shortcomings. But they should realize that this is not about them, its all about enabling the winning of the All Ireland for this proud county.

  80. JP
    There isn’t a hope in hell McNicholas will walk. [Deleted].
    Sean Burke
    Agree there should be a meeting before anything happens.County final is on October 19th so plenty time to organise one.It would give a good idea of what support there would be going an attendance
    P Mac
    Good men are wanted now and there are plenty of them in this county with the best interest of Mayo football at heart.The likes of Martin Carney,John Maughan,James Horan,Tony O’Connor, Kevin O’Neill, Billy Fitzpatrick, JP Keane, the list goes on,men that have given years to Mayo football,many of whom would do anything for the betterment of Mayo football.Imagine a county board with people of the calibre of those men.

  81. All – I’m getting concerned about the tone of some comments concerning named County Board members. It’s not that difficult to express opposition to individuals remaining in office without it descending to abuse.

  82. MikeyBhoy, by your rationale then the status quo will always remain. There is no point in people even trying? It is what it is and that’s that. That’s just the attitude we need, I’d love to hear your half time team talk if we were 3 points down and playing into the wind in the second half.
    In fairness I can see where your cynacisim is coming from but I never ever think that things cannot be changed. This is not about losing the last couple of All Irelands, or even the disputes between the CB and JH. This is about the continued failings of our CB and it’s inability to run it’s affairs in a competent manner. $8000 from New York??? Big deal, myself and my 4 mates nearly spent that between us. How many millionaires of Mayo descent live and work on the east coast of America? How many of these would have generously donated to the cause if approached correctly? How many were approached? Was there any analysis done on potential “targets” for fundraising whilst there? Or was it just left up to Paddy forcing the team to eat on the Friday night in front of an unagreed “function” where absolutely everyone was dying of embarrassment, players, management and supporters.
    If our CB had the requisite organisational abilities and vision they should have returned home with $200,000. Instead they came back with barely enough to cover the diesel costs for the bus for the year and a hell of a lot of burned bridges.
    I for one, think that this is worth pursuing.
    Hon Mayo.

  83. Well said Roger Milla
    If funds dry up then it doesn’t matter who runs the CB as it won’t have anything to run on, which will be the case if this current crop stay stubbornly put.
    Nobody but a fool would contribute to a cause that lacks transparency and I will not invest a cent while the present ruling body is in office.
    The power for change will ultimately come down to money and if a system could be set up to have an alternative fund,those that run that would be in the position to dictate the changes required.
    To some the events of the last few weeks are seen as a handicap for our near future but it is in fact the perfect time and although the inter club season is still with us we have at least 4 months to get whatever is needed to be done, done.
    I don’t want to go into the redevelopment of McHale park too much but to those who are worried about ‘the kerrys’ of this world laughing about us, well, we gave them the perfect joke…………….no All Ireland for 60 odd years and we spend most of our present and future funds on a white (grey) elephant and get rid of our excellent medical team to prop it up. We crib about the Dubs having all the money, wouldn’t 400k pa help our push for AI success and our clubs greatly?
    Any change has to be for the better because none puts our confidence in the incompetent.
    MaighEo ABu

  84. is it possible for a group to come together and head into the next CB meeting and make our feelings clear in a calm and collected way ?

  85. Is that the Eugene Rooney that once worked in Gilmartins pub beside my fathers old bus depot in Ballina, the Eugene Rooney who then joined the guards, who won a national league medal with Mayo?

    If it is that’s great. He’s the first notable ex Mayo player to support PJs rallying cry. Surely there are other Mayo men and women who wore the Green and Red. Their voices are needed now! Let’s be having ye

  86. Is it a case that croke park bailing out the Co board for mc hale park gave them good grounds that time to tell us to shut up and play in Limerick so the Co board just said ‘yes sir’. And is it the case that mc stays ‘radical’ approach meant putting a lot of money into the senior team next year where Connely is seemingly going to run it on fumes? Obviously money is the issue behind most decisions but with the right men controlling the purse the purse should be bulging with donations from mayo people all over the world. If a million was needed to supply the resources for Sam 2015 then I’m sure it would be collected by Christmas.

  87. With all due respects it’s all well and good to voice change on a social media platform. The reality is however that to make change one has to be actively involved with our clubs – there is a structure re elections etc. In honesty how many of the contributors here are actively involved with their clubs? ( how many are members of a club?) I bet not many.

  88. Pj
    Everything you say and stand for I completely support. But before engaging on a major change initiative it is always wise to conduct, what they call in the business, an environmental audit – a scan of the present landscape to see where we stand right now.
    Who will be the agents of change? Most clubs struggle to get good people to take leadership positions in their own clubs. The most energetic members are involved with teams from u8 to senior, fundraising, development projects and generally keeping the show on the road. At the agm very little attention is paid to who attends co board meetings or indeed what happens there. For most active gaa members it’s mostly about the club and what happens at county level is secondary at best. Looking at my own club I figure this is unlikely to change any time soon and I would wager that other clubs are the same and so the type of person attending co board meetings is unlikely to change.
    Can change be brought about from outside this group?
    With great difficulty I suggest! A close relationship of mutual interdependence exists between all involved, underpinned by friendships, family ties, social networks and expediency. ‘ Outsiders’ are viewed with suspicion and an immune reaction is triggered at the slightest hint of interference from an alien from outside this network or indeed from thinking that does not align with the shared, comfortable, tacit assumptions of this group. Those promoting dissent, alternative thinking and other forms of non-alignment are sure to be ostracised.
    So is change possible at all?
    Yes! But it must involve ‘insiders’. What is required is someone of status from inside who can become chairman at the next agm. They then set the tone and surround themselves with like minded individuals who gradually change the culture from inside.
    The challenge then for us is to identify those individuals and act politically to ensure they replace those discredited officers who betrayed our core values so badly by telling lies and betraying our trust.
    So PJ if you want change (as I do with a passion) you must work with the culture and not against it. Remember that ‘culture eats strategy for breakfast’.
    I am sure there are good people on the co board and attending co board meetings who are capable of leading this county with integrity and vision. Let’s use our influence to get one good who will act as chair and then see what happens.

  89. Really interesting piece and well worth further discussion, and great that everybody is concerned about Mayo football, however I would point out your first responsibility is to your club, no club equals no players, so many clubs are struggling now financially, so help them and everyone will benefit. If you want to support Mayo, buy a county board ticket off your club for €100, if 5000 Mayo supporters did that, they would be helping club and county. Also one more point to make is that club delegates are there for their clubs primarily and that is their responsibility and rightly so, and one final point, everybody at club and county executive are volunteers, I didn’t see any names coming forward to help when Mayo were doing well, but everybody bitches when things go wrong, no either get up and do something about it or shut up

  90. @johncuffe the only reason I mention on monaghan by nameis he was the original poster and it is obvious both of you have major issue with the rejected review.
    The problem with campaigns like this while every one agree on the problem every one has their own madcap solution from storming a county board meeting to harassing minimum wage workers in everlys

  91. What I am curious about is what the new management think of all this. They do not exist in a vacuum. Was it their idea to get rid of the existing medical team? Do they have a team to replace it? Was it their idea and their idea only to retain Buckley? I would expect the answer to all of the above to be in the affirmative.

  92. I think we’re all jumping the gun slightly about the medical team, I mean they’ll have to be one since its a necessity…so lets wait and see who comes in. Considering Hollymount’s win at the weekend I wouldn’t think Connelly has been thinking to much about next year’s job yet.

  93. David . I don’t doubt your passion nor your honesty. I can only speak for myself but I can assure you I have neither a minor or major issue with the
    “Rejected” Review.

    I am too long round to dwell and fester on such issues. The Review vanished, in my opinion from press reports at the time it simply was allowed to drift. Like yourself though I only want the very best for our county.

    Another poster posed the question as towards the present management view on certain issues regarding the board. I originally thought that a contest was between Noel and Kevin. I assume Hollymount and Ballina nominated the lads.

    Did Castlebar then nominate late in the day their man Pat? Where exactly did all of this materialise into a joint managerial team. September is almost out and a board that at times moves snail like are to be commended , at least, for the speed of the mark. Galway gone since August still await white smoke.

  94. I am sure there will be a medical team, things are not quite that bad. My curiosity is centered on where they stand in relation to the county board, level of autonomy, budgets, etc. Regardless of what they are up to at the moment I would expect them to be clear on all these things at this stage. disarray or not.

    If as has been mentioned on here that NC’s brother is on the CB – is Mayo football one of the few areas in modern life that the term conflict of interest is not chucked about when it comes to appointments?

  95. Thanks!

    Just a short note to say thanks to everyone who posted comments and sent emails.

    A special thanks to Willie Joe who hosted the Article, which in fairness he agreed to do with some element of risk to his site.

    The intention behind the article was to try and establish if Supporters felt that there was a real and urgent need for change at County Board level as the Clubs appear to have lost all interest in driving change.

    I think it is clear from the comments that those in favour of change are very much in the majority.

    To the posters of negative comments….

    I just want to say that I don’t represent any Formal Group other than the general Supporters of Mayo GAA who are in their thousands. This started on Friday last in a discussion with my 10 year old Son who along with his 6 year old brother had just survived Blue Day in School. As I sat with them in their Mayo Jerseys I asked them why Mayo was so important to them that they would wear their Mayo Jerseys to a school full of Dublin Jerseys. They both said ‘I Love Mayo’. Do I need to explain my motives any further?

    I did work on the Strategic Plan with Liam Horan but to say I am bitter as a consequence couldn’t be further from the truth. I just see the work we did as unfinished business which Mayo GAA still need.

    On the comment relating to harassing or bullying minimum wage workers in Elverys, I just want to say that I take great exception to the use of there words as I never used them. Please with draw your comments Mr Lydon.

    To those who questioned where the replacements will come from I would just ask you the following question – Do you expect the current CB to life for ever?

    For me this is about our County Board and the unprofessional manner they went about their business and the further potential they have to destroy the Mayo Brand.

    Clubs have to take ownership of the County Board and rather than the CB dictating to them they need to set the actual agenda and drive it.

    With the on-going support of Willie Joe’s Blog my intention now is to carry out a Survey of the much wider Mayo Supporter base to try and establish their opinion on a number of key issues relating to Mayo GAA. On reflection I felt that a Survey was a fairer method of establishing feedback as it gives both sides to the argument a chance to participate. I hope to have the Survey link ready to go live by Thursday at latest.

    I know that there are hundreds (possibly thousands) of intelligent and indeed wealthy Mayo people all over the world who would love to contribute in a significant way to improve Mayo GAA. The challenge for us as a County is how we harness this energy. One thing for sure is that the current individuals and structures at County Board level have failed to achieve it.

    Finally, following the uploading of the Article on the Blog, 2 individuals contacted me with information in relation to the process around how the management team was appointed. If the information which I now have is an accurate reflection of what happened then the evidence exists that the County Board conspired to get one answer and completely disadvantaged other interested parties of which they appears to have been more than just Kevin McStay.

    To put it simply this is similar to Cormac Reilly actually wearing a Kerry Jersey in the Replay!

  96. P J Monaghan,
    I am fully behind change at county board level and was amazed that the clubs didn’t make it happen last Thursday night.I look forward to seeing the results of the survey but at this point my questions to you are the following,is there going to be a meeting set up for supporters to meet you?,on two occasions you have stated(and I have no reason to doubt it)that you have evidence of wrong doing at county board lever,when are we going to see this?,surely if this was in the public domain the county board would be left with no choice but to walk,like I said I have no reason to doubt you but I and I’m sure many more would like these questions answered

  97. Great post PJ. I agree with what you are looking for. Diehard I have not always seen your point of view in the past, but you are on the button here on this one.

  98. I think a public meeting would be needed. If PJ has evidence of wrong doing then it needs to be made available to supporters. If it’s correct and can be substantiated then it would have to force change.
    The second important thing that’s needed is a group within the county board to take over if change happens. Is there a person or persons within the current setup who would be willing to implement the changes required.

  99. Has Mayo ’51 any hand to play in all this? Could it be used as the official supporters club and as such a mouthpiece for supporters?

  100. I think we need to get back to the Real issue here

    did members of the board overstep the mark by their action in ringing K mcstay .
    Was any rule broken . if so which one ?
    if there was then they should be removed from office. how to do this is another issue . could croke park and all their committes have a role to play?

    everythig else here is just noise every one trying to piggyback their favorite cause onto this issue .
    much like what the americans call pork barrel Politics.

  101. Hi Pebblesmeller,
    Club ’51 is solely about supporting the team on the park and as such has nothing to do with this one.

    Personally I have made my feelings clear and lots of other club ’51 people have had their speak.

    Club ’51 is not “official” and certainly does not want to be!

  102. David, maybe those “favourite causes” are well worth examining, while we’re at it. If it’s noise, it’s noise for a reason, and it’s evident that there has been legitimate discontent for a long time. Makes sense to address, that, in my book.

  103. PJ, your reasons for taking on this challenge are worthy and noble. If you remain true to those reasons, nobody can ever question your motives, nor say you are wrong to do this.

    @Diehard. you are so very accurate on your strategy on how to change the CB. To bring about change, there must be change agents and one must cultivate friendships and trust with those ppl.
    Knowing ppl of influence within the clubs, within the ranks of the CB are key to bringing about that change, by exerting that influence on others, less influential ppl, but still important and necessary.
    I agree that we can shout from the rooftops and scream and yell all we want on this and other blogs, but it will have little impact.
    You need to cultivate the resistors and work from within. This approach may take longer, wont happen overnight, but this is a long game. But it will work.

  104. All, a lot of enthusiasm and passion in all the comments. There’s a genuine feeling @ club level that it is the best interest of your club not to rock the boat @ county level if you want a fair shake when decisions concerning your club made. That this feeling is there is very unhealthy. What happened last week was farcical, but that is only the tip of the iceberg. The redevelopment of McHale Park has left the County in a major financial bind which is impacting heavily on every club and indeed the proper funding of county teams. Administrative failures have left clubs without an input on matters that concerned them or acting on incorrect information. Hearing of Balance Sheets in excess of €40,000 to run small Junior Clubs. Needs to be a major clear out not only at Officer level but of the “Old boys Club” the power brokers who control the county board.
    Structures in the GAA may appear Democratic but surely the true measure of this is that someone can speak their mind without the fear of sanction. The proposals by McStay and by Connelly \ Holmes should have been put to a full County Board meeting. Thanks to all for being so frank and forthright. Change will eventually come if the desire is strong enough. It starts always with a couple of principled people.

  105. Interesting piece about the Co Board and its machinations by Edwin Mc Greal in the Mayo News also Michael Gallagher has his say on the meeting in the Western. I didn’t get the Connaught yet and don’t have the link either ,someone here might, Its good ,at least to see these guys who appear to be very genuine in wanting whats best for the county -as people here do- put pen to paper, they appear to have a finger on the pulse of public and football opinion on this one.

  106. Just want to say I am proud of PJ’s initiative and leadership in leading this movement for serious reform for the good of Mayo GAA. The Strategic Plan must become the Guide and Purpose of a newly-shaped County Board. I am inspired by the huge response. I have written to PJ to count me in.

  107. Just on the comment regarding balance sheets in excess of 40,000 Euro to run a small junior club. That is the minimum kind of money it takes. With that 40,000 euro there would be a whole lot of things that would end up just not being claimed (expenses) or people volunteering items/cash to cover things. Remember that in most clubs have Ladies team as well at several age groups. So that is the on-pitch expenses in terms of jerseys, training gear, dressing room operation, pitch maintenance.
    Then there are expenses associated with off-pitch activities. Not all functions might cover themselves. For example if it is necessary to have a function for a long serving member (it should of course be) then that might 400 euro to cover that. All depends how well treated by a local establishment club might be.
    You will have many weeks in a club with low level of expenses and then have a 3,000 euro bill followed by a 5,000 euro bill.
    The one I used to disagree with though was the excessive level sometimes of floodlights, training pitches, gigantic club houses. If a club wants success they should cut back on those type of things and simply buy size 3 footballs for each u10 player. It’s just low cost efforts like that have only a long term return and aren’t so visible. Key is to make such worthwhile exercises visible. A bit off topic but this is where all o these vanity projects come from. The human need to do big visible press a light switch button type instance gratification projects.
    One of the most fun teams I used to play against btw was Ballycroy where you had to wash in the local river. Still people don’t believe me about that. I think it’s still the same pitch? Not sure if there is a dressing room with showers now.

  108. Have not been “treading the boards” here for some time ( in fact a couple of years ago WJ – – I think you deleted a comment of mine because it was a little over the top – – it was seen as being too much “anti-Mayo CB” – – – somehow in the current climate I think it would have no bother getting through) but it is practically impossible to resist PJ’s rallying call to arms for the betterment of Mayo football. I am an admirer of Noel Connelly and believe he is an inspirational leader with the capacity to carry on and improve on Monsignor Horan’s good work. In other words I believe he can deliver me back to Mayo next September. I would hope “off the field activity” would not interfere with his cause. Notwithstanding this I support PJ’s crusade – – but it is going to be difficult – very difficult. We need to know the EXACT state of the finances as they exist currently. Paddy, JP and another couple of the greying dinosaurs need to do the decent thing and step down voluntarily – – – we urgently require men of vision and business acumen to promote the Mayo brand and to tap into the generosity of the world-wide Mayo diaspora. The present set-up resembles a bad trade union where the board members are untouchable – – more interested in maintaining the “status-quo” and preserving their own individual side benefits. In fairness I believe there are some genuine fellows on the board but they did no favours to Mayo football by their silence last week and then giving Paddy a round of applause – – jaysus it beggars belief. We could do with a chairman that has the universal respect of the Mayo footballing public – – – for instance someone of the calibre of Martin Carney and put fellows on the board that have vision and knows what it takes like James and Liam Horan – – why not have a representative of Cairde Muigheo and supporters who are putting their money where their mouths are. There are many of these talented Mayo men around if they can be persuaded to take up the cudgels – – again I wouldn’t like it to distract from Noel’s efforts with the team – – incidentally I think he has his own medical team lined-up. “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm” – – I am enthusiastic about this project – – – let’s get ’em out. Looking forward to your next move,PJ.

  109. Samuel Maguire lost your number. Get on to Johnny B at work and he’ll give you my number. Thought you had been cured in Knock years ago!

  110. To answer your question JP. Ballycroy moved to a new pitch beside the church in the village about 10 years ago. Dressing rooms, showers and floodlights as standard.

  111. Update!

    I plan to have the Online Survey ready to go live tomorrow as promised.

    This survey will provide Mayo Supporters with an opportunity to contribute to the ongoing discussion relating to the County Board.

    I would hope to be in a position to release the Survey results within 7 days of going live.

    I think it is best if we can keep this debate online for the moment as it has a much wider reach than holding a public meeting. Mayo Supporters living on the West Coast of Anerica and Australia are currently participating in this debate.

  112. Pj,

    Anything in relation to the ‘information’ or evidence you said you had regarding how the process was carried out??

  113. Pat,

    The aim of the Survey is to try and get the Supporters of Mayo GAA to answer a number of significant questions in relation to the County Board. A Petition would be very narrow and one sided in its approach.

    If Supporters participate it will provide us with very powerful information to put in front of key stakeholders to try and force change.

    The big question is who is going to drive change and what motivates those Stakeholders to drive change.

    Clubs have lost interest. NOT one Club in Mayo has contacted me todate following my Article.

    Is that not an answer in it self?

    The Clubs failed when it came to Liam Horan’s Plan and they are failing again now.

    The drivers of change in Mayo Football will have be its Supporters but again this will depend on the numbers who are really interested.

    It should prove to be an interesting exercise.

  114. Pete,

    I would like to comment later this morning on information which individuals have passed to me in relation to the the process around how the new Management Team was selected.

    My only fear in posting this information is that it could be viewed as an attack on the new Management which is not something I want to do.

    Do Supporters want to know the truth about the process or are they happy to accept that we have secured the best management irrespective of how it was secured?

    Any views on this?

  115. PJ, the truth is needed warts and all, sadly. This is not a crusade against the new management. I think all Mayo supporters are behind them now, but if Mayo GAA is to be fixed the hard issues have to be tackled.

  116. PJ Monaghan,
    absolutely, the truth must come out. If you have evidence of something untoward or even reliable information on the management selection process, do please bring it forward. For the greater good of Mayo football and to root out the cancer that is casting a shadow over it.

  117. PJ, I have no doubt that every single contributor to this debate has only the best will, wishes and hopes for the new management team. Noel and Pat have put their hands up to try and take our lads from being one of the top 2 sides in the country to being the top side in the country. After the successful era of James Horans management that is an unenviable task and they must be both applauded and supported for it.
    The management appointment process is just one responsibility of the county board that they have made an unholy mess of. As I have said previously, for me it is the tin hat of a cock-up in a list of cock-ups that display incompetence, egotistical arrogance, brazen disregard for supporters (not to mention procedures laid down from Croke Park) and a tired, outdated, tunnel-vision approach to running our GAA sports of all ages and codes.
    This debate is not solely about Noel and Pats appointment, it is about trust. We must ask ourselves the question do we actually trust the county board? Do we trust it, in its present guise, to provide the best resources (financial, medical, logisitical, psychological, physiological, statistical e.g. training and match data etc) possible to our teams. Do we trust it to plan for the future of our games? to ensure our best and brightest talents are scouted, developed and protected? Do we trust it to be transparent and answerable to clubs (if only they would ask the hard questions) and supporters? Personally, I don’t believe we can. I, certainly, do not.
    Look at the history of its performance for the true answers and don’t get bogged down in the personalities involved. This is not personal, this is just business. The business of getting the best possible operating county board in place to provide for our current and future games. There will be collateral damage and hard decisions will have to be made, there will be fall-out and a lot of hard work involved. But if it is the correct thing to do then it is the correct thing to do, regardless. Our senior team has worked itself to a standstill for themselves, for us and our county. It is time we as supporters did likewise for them and for our games.
    Hon Mayo.

  118. I agree with a lot of the remarks stated above but one thing I disagree with is the notion of ‘real men wanted’. It is precisely the backward ways of this approach that has penetrated the County Board level in Mayo and GAA in general. Naive, selfish and narrow minded contagion.

    Ger Loughnane’s methods and philosophy are seriously outdated and so too now are the comments around his methods. There is a clear disparity in the level of professionalism at both the training and playing levels of our players and coaches and the philosophies of the county board cobwebs respectively. In this sense the GAA is now more conflicted as an organisation than ever, failing to have any real identity, muddied between the traditional values of ‘community spirit and involvement’ and the emerging professional approach with a win at all costs mentality. This identity crisis brings with it a whole new challenge. Look at what has happened at club level in Dublin. How many senior and intermediate clubs are now fully made up of local representatives both on the filed and at executive level? The point is that this challenge and identity crisis is systematic and unless we change the whole structure then we will never move forward, both as a county and as an organisation. Let’s get new and more importantly young blood in to shock the system and adapt to what ultimately is a evolutionary challenge. Its not just time for real men but time for intelligent people to take the rains and move the whole system forward (using the word men seems very sexist).

  119. PJ,

    A big thank you for going to the lengths you are going to. I live in NY, and would also be quite willing to support your quest. I have not been on line for a while. Went back for All-Ireland.

    I was hoping that Kevin McStay would get the job, as I do believe he has Mayo’s best interests at heart. I believe tactically he was more more astute than his competition. To be honest, I was not a huge fan of Liam McHale, he has put his foot in his mouth too many times, but I also was comfortable that for the betterment of the Mayo senior football team,Kevin McStay would have the ability to keep him on a fairly short lease. Kevin McStay is owed a major apology by a lot of county board officials.

    I also think it is quite possible, that we may be giving the current chairman way too much credit for coming up with everything that happened by himself. Methinks he had a lot of help.

    The end game is to support the players in any way for all the hard work and effort they have put in over four years. Despite falling at the final fence, they plus James Horan have brought Mayo to a level, they have not been at in my lifetime and I am no spring chicken.

    Good luck with everything you are attempting to do.

    Finally I am sure there are a lot of good people involved with the county board, who put endless hours in trying to better football in Mayo.

    Hopefully with the efforts of a lot of genuine thoughtful supporters, we may separate the wheat from the chaff.

  120. “muddied between the traditional values of ‘community spirit and involvement’ and the emerging professional approach with a win at all costs mentality. This identity crisis brings with it a whole new challenge.”

    James M, a great point. Those who admonish critics of the board with “respect the clubs”, “follow the (hierarchical) protocols” or “avail yourself of the existing democratic processes within the GAA” ignore the circumstances which gave those structures and protocols in 18884 have changed.

  121. A person involved in the Dublin football scene made the point to me recently that is was good smart people involved at nearly every level of Dublin GAA that was going to drive Dublin GAA to new levels and that the money coming into Dublin GAA was only a consequence of this.

  122. Good comment that Real Men Wanted probably needs to be reined in a bit. Definitely more ladies involved. I’ve administered a club with men and ladies. It’s a cliche but ladies generally are better at getting things done. However I think the original spirit of the message was for people to take action.
    For example I’m willing to setup a player scouting database to track our high potential players. But I wouldn’t waste my time or feel inclined to offer it to current administration. Easy to setup n given for free. How many more resources can come in from a Mayo global supporters club. It’s not just cash. Mayo has probably the strongest global gaa identity. Our county board are not even talking about that fact. Contacts networks from a global supporters base is a powerful thing. It should be an identifiable social media/online thing you can join. With power to it not just ‘liking’ something on Facebook. Think like ice bucket challenge but you have to show your Mayo colours nominating other Mayo fans to join.

  123. Looking to the future, maybe we can learn from the below article about Brian Cody’s secrets to success:

    http://www.irishexaminer.com/sport/gaa/cody-success-all-about-challenging-yourself-289591.html

    I love this paragraph: (When you don’t achieve what you want to achieve don’t think of it as hard luck or we didn’t get the rub of the green. That is kind of making defeat acceptable. That is saying it will work out the next day. When you don’t win the reason is not hard luck, the reason is you are not good enough. The challenge is to make yourself good enough.)

    I’d love if Pat Holmes and Noel Connelly followed these principles and our County Board should be doing the same thing too.

    This sums it up really: (Bringing professionalism to your set-up is so important. The setting of standards, making demands of yourself, making demands of the players and backroom members and constantly looking for improvement from everyone is so important. The great thing is, from my experience, the more that demands are made of people the more they like it, the more they enjoy it. Because everybody’s ambition is to be part of a set-up that is going to be the absolute best.)

  124. First of all huge thanks to Willie Joe for this great blog. The use of social media wouldn’t be my forte but I’ve been dipping in a lot this year and it has brought me up to speed on many aspects of Mayo Football and here’s my first post.

    I wish all our players and our new management team the best of luck and every success in 2015 and like so many others I wish the County Board could be reenergised, stand full square behind the team, leave no stone unturned in the quest for excellence at all levels and take a leaf from the books of the gallant players and outgoing management, who have achieved so much, for the good of Mayo football in the days months and years ahead. Now is the time to build on this and to ensure that Mayo remain, in the words of James Horan, “consistently competitive” at the very highest level and become regular All Ireland Winners.

    Re fundraising I’ve been trying to think of a simple viable idea that would have wide appeal and here’s what I suggest. In the lead up to matches (league and championship) perhaps a system could be set up whereby people could text “Up Mayo” to a number to make a donation of €2. Surely some technological whizz could set this up and the idea could be promoted at the matches, on local radio, local press and relevant social media. As the contribution is small hopefully large numbers of Mayo supporters could participate often.

  125. Read Cody’s article. Love his bit about hard luck and rub of the green stories making defeat acceptable and promoting the idea that it will work the next day. You lose because you are not good enough.

  126. Good morning PJ

    Really enjoyed your article and your passion and look forward to the next stage. I am happy to take part.

    Is the survey up and running? The biggest problem I see is that momentum might be lost and people will let their anger fall and move on. You are brave to take this on and I hope you get the support.

    Well done too Willie Joe for jumping on board this campaign. I think any genuine supporters wants rid of the deadwood.

  127. JP and MM….I like they way you are thinking. Good innovative ideas…we need to take the lead in terms of harnessing all the potential support from the wider Mayo community. Look at the ‘ Mayo 4 Sam’ thing that took off online, people with homemade banners and posters in all sorts of peculiar global destinations…or spray painting Mayo for Sam on the road during the Tour de France. Mayo people have a passion for their county that I believe is unmatched by any other. We carry the green and red with us wherever we go, and are proud of it. In short we need to tap into the resources we have.

    It’s clear from all the excellent comments that the current county board set up and the structure if Mayo GAA is archaic. It’s grey, withered.

    We need leaders, bright new ideas a new way of doing things.

    Good luck PJ Monaghan. I too have emailed and offered support. Thank you for your efforts.

  128. Who is going to fill in this survey? What methodology is being used? How is it going to be representative of the Mayo support?

  129. @ Mikey Bhoy ,

    I would say it will be an online survey with simple enough questions and you will have four or five options as answers. I hope it is similar to the football reveiw committee survey and they should have a personal comments or issue to add at the end. These surveys are pretty straight forward and if posted online everyine should have access. If everyone has accesss then you would have no problem with it being reprensentative of the Mayo support!! Whether it is representative of my view or your view on the current standard of administration well that’s hard to predict hence the need for a survey.

  130. Update!

    I had hoped to have uploaded the Survey before close of business yesterday but unfortunately this did not happen. This was due mainly to the fact that what started out as a simple petition ‘County Board Out’, please answer ‘YES’ or NO’ has now turned into a very detailed Survey which will hopefully measure the feelings of Mayo Supporters in relation to recent events and also establish how Supporters of Mayo GAA can assist in taking the County forward. I also wanted to make sure that the County Board could if they so wished participate in the Survey. It would be wrong of me to exclude them!

    The Survey questions have come from the various comments to my Article along with the many emails I have received. There is clearly no doubt but the Supporters want answers, they want resignations but more importantly they want to know how we can put structures in place in our County Board to make sure that this will never happen again.

    I spoke to a Chairman of a medium size Club in Mayo and I asked him the simple question ‘why won’t the Clubs move against the County Board?’ His answer was short ‘FEAR!’.

    If this is true it supports the long held view by many that our Clubs are ruled by a Dictatorship which is the County Board.

    For change to take place we must replace FEAR with COURAGE and BELIEF.

    It is also now very clear that we are entitled to answers and resignations as the individuals (of which there were many) who orchestrated and participated in the recent events need to now face up to the consequences of their actions.

    I issued the final draft of the Survey to a few trusted friends to ask them to ‘road test’ it for me. I would hope to receive comments back by Monday morning and provided the comments do not warrant the need for major changes, the Survey will go live by Monday evening with the grateful help of Willie Joe’s Blog.

    The other key point which has come out of this process for me is the debth of feeling and emotion which exists within the Mayo Supporter base. I have received emails from men in their 70’s which have been truly inspirational.

    Over the weekend can I ask you to consider the following;

    (a) if you have not already done so please read the Draft Strategic Action Plan, even from pages 1-11. WJ has kindly offered to post a link to the Plan in a following comment. In order to complete the Survey from an informed base it is very important that you have read it’s Key Recommendations

    (b) if you are speaking to family and friends over the weekend please bring their attention to recent events and also remind them of the upcoming Survey. It is important that we get as many supporters as possible to complete the survey

    Finally and most importantly please reflect and consider what it means to you to be a Mayo Supporter and please post your feelings on the Blog. Your feelings and emotions can be very powerful in driving a Campaign for change.

  131. Will reread it again The Strategic Review this morning. Great work P.J.
    I’m sure it has actually consumed alot of your time all of this.

  132. Folks,
    The sole aim of all true Mayo supporters has to be the implantation of an updated Horan plan. The ridding of the cancer in McHale park will be a very convienent byproduct. If we focus on just getting rid of the current shower without implemention of the strategic review recommendations then all we’ll have done is put the cancer into remission to come back in the future. I don’t think anyone who has read the recommendations of the review could not feel rage at where Mayo GAA could be right now had it been implemented.
    Anything less than full implentation of an updated Horan plan will be a failure on our behalf and one in which future generations of Mayo GAA players and supporters will suffer badly for.

  133. Well Jim McGuinness you timed that well . Had you departed the Hills a month ago perhaps you’d be our saviour now!

    Speaking to an old friend the other night he cited “fear ” of the county board as one of the reasons that Mayo clubs take such an ambivalent attitude towards matters Green and Red. Speaking to others , this “fear” or “we have no say” theme came across loud and clear.

    “Fear” of what? . That you won’t get your breakfast or water allowence or unable to pay your LPT, UHC, fear that you’ll get a heart attack in Blacksod but be dead by the time you reach hospital in Castlebar?

    “Fear” is relative and if you are afraid in a sporting context or arena, then your out of your depth and you should take up sewing or painting. “Fear” can be hosed away by “power”. Mayo clubs have the power. Perhaps it’s time they decided if they wished to exercise it.

    Below is a comment from another site by some Mayo unfortunate circa April 2011. The only thing to “fear” is ” fear” itself.

    “ye two lads have yer fingers on the pulse as regards the co board and delegates. i can add a little to that however.

    our club had a admitadely brief discussion about the Plan a couple of weeks ago. basically our delegate was told by the assembled members who obviously hadnt read the bloody thing – do whatever the county board wants cos they will screw us if we dont.

    after sundays farce we are now going to struggle in a massive way to sell the fecking co board draw tickets. if i had my own way id tell them to shove mchale park up their arses and let us get on with trying to put footballs in the hands of young fellas and jerseys on their backs.

    as far as im concerned the county board are a shower of – insert your own expletives here….”

    As the man said above “insert your own expletetive here..,”

  134. PJ and John Cuffe while I agree with alot of what you say I think the only way ye can change things is to stand against the officers at convention. You won’t change gaa rules

  135. The GAA as it is run at the moment is just a dictatorship. The Mayo County Board is a joke. They must be democratically removed and a new set-up elected that will put the interest of the Mayo team first.

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