Proposal A, B or neither of them?

Photo: GAA

In a normal year we’d know by now not only our full schedule of National League games for the following spring but also what the draw is for the next year’s provincial Championships. This year we still know neither of these things.

That’s because the structure of the inter-county football competitions for 2022 remain up in the air, with proposals on restructuring the Championship set to be debated at the GAA Special Congress on 23rd October. Both of the proposals would involve a major shake-up of the Championship, while the more radical one would suck the current National League into its format as well.

The two structural reform options have become known as Proposals A and B, though on the Clár for the Special Congress they’re Motions 18 and 19.

Proposal A would involve the retention of the Provincial Championships refashioned into four groups of eight. This would mean counties being shifted among the provinces to produce the required numbers in each group. After some preliminary matches to decide which counties were shifting provinces, the provincial Championships would then proceed on a round-robin basis, with qualifiers and a familiar knockout All-Ireland series thereafter.

Proposal B would decouple the provincial Championships from the All-Ireland, which would instead be fused with the National League. The Provincial Championships would act as the curtain-raiser for the inter-county year played in spring, with the League-based Championship following in the summer but not linked in any way to the Provincials. The round-robin phase of this Championship would produce a final eight and a knockout All-Ireland series from there on.

The two proposals, as well as all the other motions on the Clár for the Special Congress are explained in greater detail here.

For either of the two reform proposals to succeed they need to get at least 60% support at Congress. If Proposal A attains this, then Proposal B won’t get a hearing. If A and B both fail then the structure reverts that which pertained up to 2017, with qualifiers but without the so-called Super Eights.

Proposal B is the one that has built up most support in recent weeks, with the GPA having come out strongly in favour of it recently. Players such as Tyrone’s Niall Morgan and Clare’s Podge Collins have also been in the media backing this reform option. An analysis by former Meath Minor manager Conor O’Donoghue has estimated that Proposal B could rake in an extra €10m in revenue for the GAA.

But support for this option isn’t universal. Ulster GAA Council Secretary Brian McAvoy castigated the proposal, branding it “the worst motion I ever saw on a Congress Clár.” Jim McGuinness also voiced strong opposition to the proposal a few weeks back.

Most GAA people see the need for change but even among proponents of change there’s uneasiness about both proposals on offer. Cahir O’Kane in the Irish News summed up the shortcomings of Proposal B well, making the point that while it had much to commend it, the flaws inherent in it are “crippling”.

He has a point. The key flaw in the proposal is that teams finishing outside the top five of Division One in the League phase of the Championship would then be eliminated, while the top two teams in Divisions Two, as well as the top team in Divisions Three and Four would play off to see which of them would go forward to the All-Ireland quarter-finals. Try as you might to make some sense of such an arrangement, you have to conclude that it’s bonkers.

Which then leads to the question of whether or not Congress should – à la Boris Johnson and Brexit – vote to get a reformed structure in place and then seek to fiddle with the details later. No more than the UK Government’s approach to international treaties, however, I’m not sure there’d be much merit in Congress going down that route on Saturday week.

The expectation appears to be that Proposal A hasn’t a prayer and while Proposal B will likely garner more support it won’t hit the 60% threshold that’s required to carry the day. With the GPA pushing hard, though, that level of support is most likely getting closer all the while. It appears telling, however, that neither GAA President Larry McCarthy nor DG Tom Ryan have voiced support for it.

Personally, while I would be strongly in favour of a shift to a League-based Championship, I think the flaws within the Proposal B option are too great and, if I had a vote on Saturday week, I’d be voting against both reform proposals.

What about the rest of you – do you support Proposal A, Proposal B or neither of them? Let’s end with a vote on the options.

Which Championship structure proposal do you support?

  • Neither of them (50%, 390 Votes)
  • Proposal B (46%, 359 Votes)
  • Proposal A (5%, 36 Votes)

Total Voters: 785

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126 thoughts on “Proposal A, B or neither of them?

  1. Voted proposal B even though I do I think there are better. If i thought next year there would be other options I would have voted “none of them”. But this conversation has been going on for years and we need change so lets go with B. I think the 4 groups of 8 is part of the best structure so lets go with it and the only changes required will be just widening up who plays in what competition so easier to tweek that once the league structure is in place.

    My Big problem with Option B is that I dislike any competition where a team may want to lose a game. If it looks like you could finish 6th in division 1 maybe a county could look at the last game and say we lose this and get releagted as we have a better chance of qualifying next year when playing in division2. that doesnt sit well with me

  2. With option B – it would be easier reach quarter finals playing in division 2 rather than division 1. For example next year if was assume Dublin, Kerry and Tyrone will finish in the top 5 – then only two of Kildare, Armagh, Monaghan, Donegal and Mayo will reach the quarter finals – nothing easy there. Easier to operate in division 2 with low profile games, finish in top three and try to come in under the radar.

  3. Be interesting to hear what our great “leader” Larry McCarthy thinks or has he disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle?

  4. @Southmayo Exile, I know what you mean but why not aim for the top 4 of Division 1 to begin with.

    Only one of the teams that finish in the top four of Division 1 will face another Division 1 team in the quarter finals (the team which finishes 5th), the rest will be facing Division 2 and potentially Division 3 or 4 opposition.

    If we’re not back in the final again in 2022 and then finish the job off, then there is zero ability to learn from the mistakes and the show will be finally over for the current set up.

    No pressure, eh.

  5. If neither A nor B meet the 60% requirement, it’s back to the Pre Covid Status Quo with Dublin getting two defacto home games in Croke Park, in the Super Eights… A ground that Dublin are glad to call home when it suits them and neutral when it suits them as well, not that they even pay for the cutting of the grass at Croke Park never mind anything else. A Donegal proposal at the last convention, wanted rightly in the interest of fairness to remove Dublin from the Croke Park for their home game of the Super Eights.. Mayo County Board under a previous chairman were mandated by the Mayo club’s to back the Donegal proposal, but in the event didn’t even attend Congress… Democracy in the GAA can be very cumbersome, the Donegal motion really only affected a small number of counties, the Div One Counties and maybe one or two more but it would help if Mayo County Board done as they should have in the first place.

  6. I don’t understand the merits of B. The majority of teams will play less games.

    With the existing system, eight teams are knocked out in the first round of qualifiers, stick them in a Super 8s of their own. Eight more in the next round, same thing. Four out in round 3, same in round 4, clump them together for another Super 8s. Four separate All Ireland’s and for the most part these groups will be of teams of similar level. Best part everyone gets a minimum of five championship games, and a total of 12 between league and championship

    Over time, encourage the provinces to move to league structures, giving teams more games. Also look to play the provincial championships during the league, something like 3 weekends in a row, 2 league games and a championship one, with the fourth weekend off.

    IMO this is best plan for the moment.

  7. Hard to figure out what’s best. I like the provincial championship but only Ulster is consistently competitive. Dublin dominate Leinster, Kerry in Munster apart from last year’s freak result and Connacht can be won by either Mayo, Galway or Roscommon. What happened to Leitrim and Sligo this year isn’t good for anyone. I certainly would not vote for A. Proposal B has the potential to become something but if the bottom 3 in Div 1 are going to be eliminated then I can’t say I’m in favour of that. Maybe the bottom team in Div 1 should be eliminated while the second and third bottom play off against winners of Div 2 and 3. Or maybe have 16 teams in a Div 1A and 1B. Top 4 in each section progress Teams 5 and 6 in each group go into play off with the top 4 teams in Div 2A and 2B or something like that. Not really sure what’s the best way to go.

  8. Neither of them for me because I believe Proposal B needs to iron out its flaws and come back at a later date. February to July window isn’t suitable for such of format either.

    With the effort thats put in especially by the GPA I’ll be surprised if Proposal B isn’t voted in and that leaves Mayo or another top 6 team in danger of missing out on All Ireland quarter final spot and maybe taken by a Div 3 or 4 winner. (madness)

    Under proposal B basically means the provincial championship is scrapped. The provincial league played in February and March is the FBD and McKenna dressed up.

  9. @Leantimes, no super 8s if neither proposal is voted in. GAA have confirmed it will be back to the 2017 format with straight knock out quarter finals.

  10. It is bonkers. Teams would be far better in Div 2, 3, 4, to get to the prelims/quarters the easy route.

  11. Four groups of eight.

    Does that mean that New York and London have been tossed out. Ouch !

    If this was horse racing, to help prevent runaway victories, a handicap system would be introduced.

    Div 4 teams given a 12 to 15 point headstart against Div 1 opposition.
    Div 3 teams given a 7 or 9 point headstart against Div 1 opposition.
    Div 2 a 3 to 5 point headstart and so on.

    I don’t see the weaker teams closing the gap, but I don’t agree that any county should be left out of the championship either.

    This round robin format is only a gimmick to please everyone, but in reality some teams haven’t even a hope of getting over the round robin stage and so essentially aren’t really participating in the championship at all.

    I would Weight the divisions, and that’s one sure way that the likes of a Leitrim would have a chance of turning over a Mayo or a Galway.

    Restructuring should be geared towards equalling the playing field to give every county in Ireland a chance of winning Sam Maguire.

    The current proposals are more geared towards gate receipts and making sure counties get games, but in reality do nothing to address the enormous gulf in quality between the top teams and the bottom teams.

    Bring in a properly weighted handicap system and then you would have one hell of a championship.

  12. Revelling, London will remain part of Connacht, be it championship under status quo or a pre season league. Are we all looking forward to a trip to London in February for such a game?

    New York no longer part of Connacht, they will now play in the B All-Ireland.

  13. No chance Revellino. Gaa would then be the only organisation in the world to do such a thing to a team sport.
    We’re in a real bind. The logical thing would be to rule the weaker teams out of the championship altogether, ie Sam Maguire for Div 1 and 2, but I’d also agree that this isn’t fair. As things stand, at least all counties are in the Sam Maguire cup. It’s a real headscratcher trying to find the best possible solution. However it doesn’t look like proposals A and B will solve it. There is some significance though in the fact that the GPA (the Players) want B. They understandably want lots of games of importance in high summer. Maybe the GAA need to rethink a new proposal.

  14. What is with the gaa public in general with this romantic notion that all teams should be able to compete for all Ireland. Shur what sport has that , stockport county are never going to win the premier league , Bohemians will never win the champions league , Carlow will never win sam Maguire, deal with it and quit with the faux sympathy .

    If both proposals end up in the bin (likely ) , I find it disappointing that super 8 will not be an option, I thought it was still on the table but read in the comments here it’s not. Super 8 s is better than previous backdoor qualifier system .

  15. Sean/all – I added to the confusion about what happens if both motions fail but, according to that linked piece on the GAA website, it’s clear that the structure reverts to what it was before the Super Eights. I think that’s good – the Hateful Eights were a complete abomination and good riddance to them.

  16. Those who vote for neither proposal – ask yourselves this: Is either better than the status quo (without super 8s)?
    Imo, proposal B is flawed but certainly better than what we currently have.
    So I’d vote for that, let it settle in, then assess and modify to make it better.
    If both proposals are voted down, we stick with the same tired, broken model.

  17. Although something prob does need to change, the main reason I don’t pay attention to Hurling is as I can’t work out how we fit around Liam, too many cups, etc that it’s a mess. Both of these proposals seem to be suggesting Football goes the same way.

  18. Exactly tubberman , it can always be modified to make it better .

    Have to disagree willie joe , super 8 offers more than the old qualifier system . Anyway anything is better than the traditional knockout

  19. @Sean. Why shouldn’t smaller Counties be given a chance to win Sam.

    A handicap system would allow to keep the Provincial set up in place.

    It would address the unfairness of the current financial benefits which a few counties enjoy.

    It would address the fact that some counties have only a fraction of the population of the bigger Counties.

    Look at golf. If you are lousy at the game there is a handicap system in place which allows the less talented to compete for prizes.

    Look at the draft system in the states. The weaker teams get the first round draft picks. It evens things up and works very well.

    Let’s hear your solution Sean.

  20. The reason Div 3 and 4 should not be in the Sam Maguire cup is that not only can they not win it, they can’t even compete in it. They’ll get minced by the top teams. This doesn’t happen in other sports, so Gaa needs to acknowledge it’s not fit for purpose.

    I don’t think it would sit well with many of us to axe a load of teams from Sam Maguire, given this is the way it has always been since the foundation of the Gaa. How, for instance, would these weaker counties react? However it may eventually be the only solution. Then again, it may never get through Congress.

    But as things stand with Proposal B, weak teams who reach the prelims and quarters will get pulverised by the top dogs. Actually they’ll probably even get more of a hammering than usual because the stronger teams at that stage will be battle hardened from coming through the top Divisions.

    By the way (as an aside), I like Wooly Parkinson’s suggestion on how Proposal B could be improved, namely to link the Provincials to championship by simply giving a point to all Provincial winners for them to carry into championship. This solitary point could be the difference between them staying up, or even winning the Division. It’s a clever, simple solution.

  21. Why go for a flawed proposal Tubberman? There’s already been far too much tinkering in recent years with rules and formats leaving us with with mish-mashes of qualifiers, knockouts, round robin quarter-finals (?!). For the sake of the sport it needs to be gotten right from the start with a sensible format that the majority can be happy with.

    I wouldn’t be too gone on either proposal. Re. Proposal A, I can’t imagine the lowest ranked teams in Ulster and Leinster being thrilled about being lumped in with Connacht and Munster just to make up the numbers. Nor do I think it will improve either competition. It doesn’t address the inherent imbalance in the number of teams in each province.

    Proposal B is on the right track but like it has been noted above it isn’t rational that Division 3 and 4 teams can be in contention for the All-Ireland while three Division One teams are out of the running. The best teams should be competing at the business-end of the championship.

    I don’t see this situation being satisfactorily resolved until the GAA accepts that tiers are needed in inter-county football. I would keep the league as-is and have the top 12 or 16 teams qualify for the Senior All-Ireland championship with the rest going into the Intermediate. Play the competitions as round-robin leagues (seeded structure with no relation to provinces) with the top teams going forward into the quarter-finals. Similar to Proposal B but with more structured tiers at the outset.

    It would also get rid of the need for competitions like the Tailteann Cup where to qualify you need to lose. An All-Ireland Intermediate or ‘B’ championship would be far more prestigious.

  22. Anyone know what counties put forward Proposal A?

    Have I read it right that a team from Leinster would compete in Connaught championship and potentially a Leinster team winning a Connaught title ? I must be reading that wrong ?

  23. It would be very simple if all counties accept that like in hurling, the majority of team have no chance whatsoever of winning Sam. That’s the starting point. Then you decouple the provincial competition, use it as pre season and run the league during the summer, division 1 plays for Sam, top 4 into semifinals, bottom 2 drop out etc. It’s so simple once we drop the nonsense of every county should get a chance to win Sam. You earn your chance by getting into division 1. Mayo hurlers don’t demand to be in the Liam McCarhy, why can Sligo or Leitrim demand a chance to win Sam?

  24. You read that correctly Mayomaningalway. One team each from Ulster and Leinster join us in Connacht while two Leinster teams go into Munster.

  25. There is no perfect solution to the structure problem within football but from looking at the options available Proposal B has the most to offer. Guaranteed 7 championship games in summer playing teams at their own level so should be competitive plus a secondary competition. Yes there are issues when it comes to the knockout stages that need to be worked on but the basis of the plan is sound and the players overwhelmingly support it. Proposal A is a non-runner and will never pass, and the super 8s are dead thankfully so its either Proposal B or back to the old qualifier system which everyone knows was unfair, caused huge problems and was no help to lower league teams. Some people are forgetting if this gets voted down it cant be revisited at congress for a certain period of years. Proposal B needs to pass for the good of the game, its not perfect but is the best solution on offer. In saying all that I fully expect it to be voted down with a return to the old qualifier system which will bring huge unfairness to the championship, lower league team getting hammered and everyone continuing to complain about structures.

  26. Something must change! I’m sure no matter what is changed, someone will be happy and someone not.
    Doing nothing is not the answer. In reality how many teams can win Sam? It’s a much bigger picture than just change the championship. The Gaa has to look at itself. Funding to help weaker counties for a start. Give them the money and not the team that keeps on winning. Even if they start that it’s a long long road until they have a chance but the people in charge will never do that. Looking forward to some sort of change, its not working the way it is!

  27. It’s crazy that the team finishing 6th in division 1 is in no mans land and out of the championship. Effectively replaced by a division 3 or 4 team.

    Apart from that I like proposal B. Having home/away games against the top counties in the height of summer would be great for promoting the game. It would draw huge crowds IMO. Assuming we’re in division 1, I could see MacHale park being close to a sellout for all the home league games.

  28. Rev , I dont have a solution that will see the weaker counties win an all Ireland or competing for one and I dont want it leveled up through a handicap system. My line of thought would be bringing a cultural change in attitude towards a secondary competition, promote it , make it important . Eastern gaels or kilmovee shamrocks are most likely never going to win a moclair cup but would aspire to one day having a panel good enough to win the junior championship and would be ecstatic about achieving such. Perhaps the inter county could push towards such a culture .

  29. I put that question to an older colleague at work this morning which proposal would he like to see come in if any and his response to me was “musha tis equal we wont win Sam anyway, we had it on a plate this year and couldn’t do it”. I hope he’s wrong, I saw the regret and sadness in his eyes and he’s watching Mayo a lot longer than me. i’m not sure which proposal i’m sold on but more competitive games will probably benefit us, the cream will rise to the top but so will the injury count mount up so its hard to know. I know people wont like this comment but i think we will benefit in the long run if we don’t reach another all Ireland final for the next 5-10 years. we need a clean break from them, time to get our heads and preparation right, its like failing a driving test and rushing out trying to take it again a month later you wont succeed if you don’t put the head down and improve. I think the hope has finally killed me so maybe its time to enjoy the journey and forget about the destination for a while.

  30. @glorydays, Interesting you mention a driving test. There are many drivers who are perfectly able to drive mistake free but on the day of the test they completely collapse.

    They’ll do something daft and make the same mistakes they made on the driving test years ago when everyone thought they had learned from it, the more tests they fail the more nervous they become.

    It doesn’t matter how many different instructors they have, the end result is the same and on the day they drive to near perfection, they’ll fail because they got the “wrong” tester on the day.

    They’ll look on in anguish as a driver they know they are better than passes with flying colours.

    Isn’t that our story, good driver but confidence shattered by repeat failings.

  31. If plan B gets accepted it will be a very different championship. I think one of the reasons we got to the last two finals is we got a handy run.
    In 2020 we had to beat Roscommon, Galway and Tipp to reach the final.
    In 2021 we had to beat Leitrim, Sligo and Galway to reach semifinal.
    In 2022 we would have to beat FIVE division 1 teams to only reach the quarterfinals and at least six division 1 teams to reach the final. A different ball game completed – would be physically and mentally very draining on teams and management.

  32. thats it exactly Viper, like the best candidate doesn’t always get the promotion because they freeze up in interviews and don’t come across well, I geniunely believe we are better off not contesting All Ireland Finals for 5-10 years until we sort ourselves out. we know Mayo can play 50% better than they played in the final, lets face it if that was a semi final against Tyrone we would have won handy enough with a few points to spare and I don’t mean to be disrepectful to Tyrone and I have no problem conceding that they were the better team and fully deserved to win Sam on the day and wish them well. a league championship something like the premier league in England might suit Mayo best where there is no big showpiece final and the most consistent team wins but I dont think that will happen

  33. A simple Junior, Intermediate and Senior championship format with relegation/promotion just like you have in the ladies games.
    Look at Meath ladies, won intermediate in 2020 and senior in 2021.
    Wicklow ladies delighted with their Junior win, now in intermediate championship.
    It’s not that difficult a concept, but far too straight forward for the GAA to implement.

  34. Southmayo Exile – yes it’ll be a more difficult route, but it will be more draining on everyone. Kerry didn’t beat any division 1 team in championship the last 2 years, for example, so it’ll be a big change for them. Dublin lost this year against the first division 1 side they met.

    The cream will rise to the top in the end.

  35. glorydays – sport is different to interviews and driving tests unfortunately. You can’t just go away to practice on your own for 5-10 years and come back better prepared.

  36. Agree that while plan B is the better of the 2 it has too many flaws in it to be successful. However, I think a lot of it has merit and maybe just need to be rejigged. I would suggest that the League format be that Div 1 and 2 Teams automatically play in the Championship but are seeded according to where they finish. Championship played on a knockout basis after the league phase.
    Div 2 & 3 play in an ‘Intermediate’ Championship also seeded. No finals in the leagues. Top team is the winner.

    Provincials played in advance of League Championship. Winners automatically get to play in Championship knockout phase. If provincial winners are in div 1 or 2 then runners up ( if a div 3 or 4 team) take their place and seeded accordingly.
    This connects the provincials with the All Ireland and makes both the league and provincials competitive and still provides Div 3 & 4 Teams with an opportunity to play in All Ireland Championship knockout phase.
    Open draw for round 2 of the knockout League Championship.

  37. Voted proposal B.
    The current championship has how many good games a year?
    In certain years there are more hammerings than good games.
    Then it often gets stated “weak counties need to raise their game”. But sure how can they under the current format.
    People give out about div one 6th, 7th, 8th teams being not part of the All Ireland series. Right, well do you want at least some sense of risk, danger and excitement in the league-championship?
    If Tipperary got Colin ORiordan back, maybe two top class u21s and a big commitment from the panel this year can they beat the top in div3? Yes.
    Can they beat top div 2 yes?
    With such a squad could they pull off a shock v a Monaghan? Tight, they’d need to be better than recent years.
    If you finished 6th in Div one you had your championship shot.
    Teams currently don’t seek relegation for an easy life pre knockout championship.
    I don’t see any squad being onboard with being happy with relegation.
    The status quo is not much of a championship.
    I’m all for change.

  38. Proposal B is the best on offer in my view. It has flaws, but they can be tweaked over time. The GAA will never let go of allowing every team to be allowed compete for Sam, and that is why they are trying to cater for everyone in this new proposal. But it they give in on that, Proposal B could work. The top 16 teams to play for Sam, the bottom 16 to play for Tailteann Cup. Its strange that every county in Ireland has a tiered system, and it works well. Yet our elite level continues to have the outdated system.

    Enda McGinley made a great point. The Status Quo, if it is retained, has the Tailteann Cup regardless..only in the GAA could this be slipped in under the radar. So the Tailteann cup is here regardless of what prevails.

  39. @Mayo Focus, that’s right, there is no status quo as such, not sure too many people have decked that though.

  40. Decouple the provincials and ‘all teams compete for Sam’ principle and you’re moving in the direction of an equitable championship – 12 teams in Senior, 12 in Intermediate, 9 in Junior. Snr and Inter structure mirror each other and breaks down into 4 groups of 3 based on open draw, the teams play each other at home and away, top 2 in each group into AI Q finals, bottom 4 into relegation playoffs where two defeated teams are relegated to inter/jnr. In Junior the highest placed team finishing 2nd taking into account score difference joins the 3 group toppers in Jnr AI semis. The two jnr and inter finalist are promoted to inter and Snr respectively for following year. 3 All Ireland finals played over a bumper weekend in Croker.
    – Every team guaranteed 4 games and two home gates
    – Certainty on games schedule
    – Fewer dead rubbers with something to play for in most games
    – Dubs on the road twice
    – Less disparity between teams in each competition
    – Teams get the opportunity to develop, target promotion and the right to make top 12 and compete for Sam

  41. Voted neither. Change is coming but we need to get this right as its a change that’s staying with no trial period on this vote at Congress

    @Mayo Focus Tailteann Cup was voted into place a few years ago in Congress. The competition would already be in place but for covid.

    As for the seven league/championship played in the “height of the summer” as said by the GPA and others in favour of proposal B.

    Those games are played in all of April and May. Yes might get some decent weather in May if lucky but we have all attended matches in April and it tends to be a cold, wet and windy month.

    Come the autual height of the summer June, July the summer will be over for 3 teams in Div 1 and 5 in Div 2. While 14 teams in Div 3,4 will play in the Tailteann Cup

  42. For the life of me i cannot see anything wrong with the qualifier system and division 3 and 4 teams can go into tailteann cup after losing in the provinicial championship. I really like and value the provinicial championships and I think it suits mayo better. With proposal B there will be dead rubber matches which are no good for anyone. I am very suprised at TOM PARSONS and don’t know what he is at . I said the same thing about the super 8 a few years ago that it was no good.

  43. Jp2, no more national league if proposal B is passed, league will be incorporated into championship.

    Jimbo, Viper, thats unfair on Tom Parsons. GPA surveyed all Intercounty players and asked them which format they preferred and they overwhelmingly voted for Proposal B. All Tom and the GPA are doing is backing the players wishes.

  44. @Mayomad

    I have nothing against Tom Parsons but honestly the GPA are a complete joke.
    There are funded exclusively by Croke Park, are therefore NOT independent so they are seriously conflicted when it comes to all decision making.
    in the real world its very hard for anyone to tell their boss they are wrong if you want to keep your job

  45. Mayo Fan in Chicago, I was just pointing out the GPA are supporting Proposal B (a proposal the GAA themselves are not supporting) following a survey of the players, its the players that want proposal B as it provides more games in summer for all teams. Just to clarify while the GPA do receive funding from the GAA (15% of their commercial revenue), they are NOT exclusively funded by Croke Park as you stated, the GPA receive 40% of their funding from government grants.

  46. @Mayomad, I think you’ll find I said the exact opposite, I said he knows what he’s doing and it’s no secret that it will lead to more commercial revenue and more money for the GPA.

    Just one little correction, not all players who were surveyed responded but of those who did 80% were in favour of Proposal B so we don’t know the opinion of those who didn’t but in any case it’s clear Tom Parsons is backing it.

    GPA and the GAA are both grant aided.

  47. Personally I liked the way it was before the Super 8’s.Weaker counties got a run in qualifiers etc.
    Logically the league should be the championship though.
    You are playing teams at your level and have a chance of silverware

  48. It will be always be in the interest of Gaa HQ to have as many games as possible in a year, attendance etc, even if this is currently disrupted due to the Covid19 virus.

  49. I would go with a proposal that has senior intermediate and junior, how many counties have never won the All Ireland? 12 plus London and New York, and 8 if these have never even played in a final. Why do we think that this would change?
    Hard to know how I would vote here, inclined to think that I would go for the status quo and work on improving option B, will need to do more research and hear different pros and cons.

  50. Viper, yes 80% of players voted for Proposal B thanks for agreeing. Therefore the GPA (not just Tom) are backing the wishes of the majority of players. Also thanks for agreeing that the GPA recieve government grants and are not exclusively funded by the GAA.

  51. @Mayomad, Well not exactly, it’s 80% of the respondents and not all players responded so we can’t say it’s 80% of the players.

    Tom is backing Proposal B personally, he’s made that very clear, he’s not just backing “the wishes of the majority of players” (who voted), and the GPA are now going a step further by writing to every County Board urging them to back Proposal B.

    Looking at some of their figures from 2019 the GPA had 10 fulltime employees costing €647,127 per annum.

    Not a bad little gig.

  52. The GPA reminds me so much of all the new Gov bodies created this past few years, more jobs to dash out for the boys.
    A silent organisation in place as if they were doing some type of good, have they ever really challenged the Gaa, the Gaa decisions re home fixtures for the Dubs this past decade.
    A bit like Politicians, remember the Celtic Tiger years from 2000 to 2009, not a budge from the opposition.

  53. Viper, not sure the point you are trying to get at, 80% of those who voted backed proposal B and the GPA are rightly backing that vote. Are they supposed to ignore this and back the other 20% or have a guess at what those who didn’t vote wants.
    Yes you are correct Tom Parsons is backing proposal B, as are the GPA, this isn’t a solo effort by him as some seem to suggest.
    As for the finances of the GPA and what the officials are paid, I’m not aware of those figures so will take your word for it. I was simply replying to a previous poster who stated the GPA is exclusively funded by Croke Park and I pointed out that this is not accurate, a point you agreed with.

  54. The GAA’s finance department have totally dismissed the suggestion that Proposal B could be worth an extra €10 million annually.

    The GAA’s numbers suggest that a qualifier system is more financially beneficial and this is interesting because the beneficial financial aspect was one of the reasons highlighted by the GPA when it urged County Boards to back Proposal B.

    Now the GAA’s estimates are that Proposal A would take in €19.3 million, Proposal B €18.8 million and a backdoor system with the Tailteann Cup €19.6 million, so the proposal the GPA were pushing the County Boards to back would be the worst option financially according to the GAA.

    How there could be a difference of €10 million in the estimates of relatively small numbers is curious, someone is making a big mistake.

    It could be the GAA’s way of politely telling the GPA, don’t try and influence County Boards.

  55. @Mayomad, I know of course but for example if only 1000 of of 1400 voted to begin with and 800 voted for Proposal B, we can of course say that 80% of the votes cast were in favour but it’s also true to say that only 57% of all players backed it.

    But either way regardless of the exact number, there is majority backing for it, whether it will have any bearing I don’t know.

  56. @Mayomad, I have attached a media link from late 2017 regarding the salaries and they were actually higher than I stated at that time, the article also states that the source of the GPA’s income was mainly from the GAA.

    The article actually highlights the wage costs :

    “What really intrigued me from the GPA financial report was the wage bill. The total for 12 employees was €921,121 – an average wage of almost €77,000. That means a big part of the GAA donation went to pay the salaries of the workers.

    Drilling down a bit and the payments to “key management” were €490,418 which was up from €370,170 in 2015. There is no figure for how many people make up “key management” but presumably it could not be any more than three. As the Americans say, you do the maths on that.”

  57. I see according to the Irish Examiner tonight the GAA finance department have dismissed the claim the the League as Championship (proposal B) will reap association more than €10m than the status quo, In fact, they project qualifier system will bring in more than the four eight-team provincial conferences and the League as Championship.

    The GPA giving false figures while promoting proposal B isn’t a good look at all.

  58. You’d want to get your facts right, Mayomagic, before levelling an accusation like that.

    The GPA clearly aren’t “giving false figures” – what they did in the letter they sent this week to counties was quote the analysis done by Fixture Calendar Review Taskforce member Conor O’Donoghue who estimated that Proposal B could be worth an additional €10m. It was his analysis, not the GPA’s, and the €10m figure was quoted widely in the media.

    The €10m figure is, of course, only an estimate and so too is that produced by the GAA’s finance department. Either of them could turn out to be right, both of them could be wrong.

    Neither of them are putting forward numbers that are ‘true’ or ‘false’ so to portray what the GPA did with the €10m figure as putting out ‘false figures’ is a gross misrepresentation on your part. And, you know, that’s not a good look at all.

  59. Is the Gaa not a voluntary organisation ?, why the need for big paid Salaries.
    I know for a fact the Stewards in Croker on match days are not getting any payment.
    Is player welfare high on the list of priorities in clubs ?, is an injured underage player giving access to physio from their clubs while recovering from an injury? It certainly isn’t the case here in Dublin.

  60. Viper, thanks for the link, im not sure what point you are trying to make though or what kind of links you are trying to make between GPA finances and the proposals up for debate. In my previous posts I was just clarifying a point a previous poster made on who funds the GPA which was in correct, I don’t see what the salaries of the GPA staff has to do with what’s being debated or why you are bringing it up. Im not on here to defend the GPA nor do I have any ties to the organisation but the figures you are using from 2017 are out of date, the GPA publish an annual financial report each year that is above board and freely available to view on their website.

    I think some people are getting carried away with finances and what additional revenue each proposal is bringing in and loosing sight of whats important, getting a championship structure that helps all teams be competitive and improve (not one that suits any one team better) . with the introduction of the Tailtann Cup all proposals involve additional games which will bring in additional revenue which isnt a bad thing, but we shouldnt be choosing the structure that brings in the most money, thats a mistake. Only one proposal offers all teams a minimum of 7 championship games in summer, playing games is what players want and thats why they want proposal B.

  61. B is certainly a step in the right direction

    Quite frankly the current system needs a serious revamp in my view, and its clear the league has been the better competition over the last few seasons. Adding the competitiveness that comes with championship football to that format and it can only be a massive winner

    However its not fully the same format is it. EVERY team in every division is still eligible to win Sam, which brings all sorts of flaws.
    Simply speaking any competition where the best 8 teams can’t all make the quarter finals has a problem, and thats an issue with B.

    This is – however – something that seems creeping into mainstream sports, this idea that weaker teams should be given alternative paths to latter stages or to major tournaments (Macedonia’s participation in the Euros being a clear recent example, as is the expanded world cup that is being brought in, the rugby league world cup has a QF place for a tier 2 nation, and closer to home we have the Joe McDonagh cup winners entering the main championship after much stronger counties have been eliminated in the hurling).

    However i would like to see B given the go ahead for the sole reason that its a start, and that tweaks can be implemented incrementally. Change is certainly needed overall in my view, and this is certainly a radical one that will bring more positives than negatives imo

    My ideal scenario would be 3 tiers of championship though

    The top tier & 2nd tier would have 12 teams, 2 groups of 6 (randomly drawn), top team in each group into semis, 2nd and 3rd in each cross play in quarters (although strictly speaking they wont be “quarters” will they with only 2 matches but you get my drift :D). Every team guaranteed 5 games at least, with promotion and relegation in play, meaning the prospect of pointless matches is much more unlikely. Tier 3 then would have 8 teams – top 4 into semis

    Couldnt see a tiered championship structure (tiered from the outset) happening any time soon though.

  62. What if we got a w/o for a home game in McHale park , does that mean we would get another home game or would that count as a home game ?

  63. @Mayomad, Well you would have to say that more games will equal more opportunities to generate commercial revenue for the GAA and that will lead to more income for the GPA if they are on a fixed percentage. It doesn’t mean that’s the reason they are backing it of course.

    The salaries issue arose when I was looking into the funding of the GPA and as it is partly funded by government I think it’s important to know if taxpayers money is being well spent and as the link will show there is a lot of money being spent on salaries.

    Personally I don’t think the GPA should try and influence delegates in one way or the other by writing to County Boards. By all means state that you back Proposal B but once you mention financial benefits I think you are getting into murky waters. And that seems to be happening already as the GAA’s finance department do not agree with the estimates produced by Conor O’Donoghue.

    This morning the GPA have stated that “The Gaelic Players Association are delighted that the GAA has confirmed that there will be no meaningful financial impact should Proposal B be backed” and “Given that this has been a concern expressed, we’re happy to see it now clarified as it should put delegates’ minds at ease on this matter.

    I don’t think the above statement is an exact reflection of what the GAA’s Finance department said at all, because the question wasn’t whether there would be a financial impact it was whether the estimates aligned.

    I have since found out that only 30% of the 1,200 GPA members responded to the survey and 80% of those were in favour of Proposal B. So that means that only 288 out of 1200 members backed Proposal B in the survey.

    So we cannot say 80% of the members backed it when the real figure is 24%.

    I’m pretty sure the majority of people have this idea that 80% of the players are backing Proposal B, and that was the impression I had myself until I started looking into the numbers.

    24% is a far cry from 80% and is not a mandate.

  64. Can someone clarify, I read that if Kilmovee didn’t show up and Achill take the pitch, the ref had the right to throw the ball in.

    Does the ref have to throw the ball in to make the the no show official ?

  65. Viper, yes 80% of those who responded voted for proposal B, the percentage of respondents is disappointing low but GPA can only run with the votes they get, the same as any other organisation. You conveniently left out the following sentence in that paragraph, “90 per cent of the county reps who had spoken to their panels were in favour of Option B”. We can take from this that 90% of county teams are in favour of Proposal B. Again Im not sure what the argument you are trying to make is here, the GPA have taken a position on which proposal they favour, so far I havent heard of or read about any player or member of the GPA saying this isnt correct or that the GPA are not actually representing the wishes of their members, I cant see the issue with the GPA backing this proposal.

  66. Revellino,
    My experience from managing a team in the Dublin Junior Championship is that a team must be on the field and ready to play no later than 15 mins after the designated match start time. If a team does not do so, and the other team in on the field at that time, the missing team forfeits the match. I’m not sure if this is a standard rule in all other counties but I suspect that it is.

  67. @Mayomad, No I didn’t conveniently leave anything out, the numbers being banded about refer to 80% of the members.

    I hadn’t intended on making any point at all but now that you have asked again me maybe I should.

    I’m not comfortable when someone says “We have 80% of our membership in favour of Proposal B” when such a statement cannot possibly be verified.

    No we can’t take from this that 90% of county teams are in favour of Proposal B at all.

    What the article says is “90 per cent of the county reps who had spoken to their panels were in favour of Option B”.

    “Who had spoken”, that doesn’t tell you how many and even if they all had we may be talking about a maximum of 28 or 29 individuals, and it says the reps were in favour and nothing more.

    It is also possible that the reps had also responded to the survey and that they are already included in the 24%.

    You would have to ask the question why an organization with only 1200 members with 10 employees on high salaries failed to get a response from 840 out of it’s 1200 members on such an important issue.

    I have nothing against the GPA at all and I have great time for Tom but I wouldn’t like to see him snookered or cornered by someone who could quickly turn the 80% figure into 24%.

    So I suppose my point is, don’t leave yourself in a position where your figures can be contradicted to such a degree.

  68. Thanks Louis. I guess Achill do have to take the pitch even if they do know Kilmovee are not going to show.

  69. Connacht council havent given their verdict on appeal yet ,so id stall the digger there about throwing any ball in at the sound . It’s been very interesting following this whole scenario .

  70. @Willie Joe GAA HQ have used the words false claims and Inflated figures in reponse to the extra €10million revenue with proposal B.

    It was widely covered by the national media because they believed the estimates produced by Conor O’Donoghue was close to the truth but to be €10.8m out is some bad effort at a estimate I’m sure you would agree.

    Maybe my point came across wrong last night but it would be more or less the same as Viper said above “once you mention financial benefits I think you are getting into murky waters”

  71. @Mayomagic, Estimating is my bread and butter, Estimates are generally accurate and there are allowances for material price increases as is evident in 2021 post Covid19 lockdown.

    I always wonder why would an Estimate for anything be inaccurate, more to do with the person that prepared it.

  72. I suppose that the Season Tickets renewal will have to wait for the outcome of the proposals.
    At the moment no one really can know what next year’s intercounty fixtures might look like.

  73. Mayomagic – the GAA’s finance director certainly disagreed strongly with the €10m figure but nowhere I can find him saying the words “false claims”. If you have a link showing other wise, you might post it here.

    In any event, this still doesn’t address the core misrepresentation you made originally, which was that the GPA were in the wrong to use the €10m figure. As I said before, none of these estimates – regardless who is eventually proved to be more correct on them – can properly be labelled ‘true’ or ‘false’ as they are only estimates and they’re only as relevant as the assumptions that go into them are reasonable. For all we know, they could both prove to be wide of the mark.

  74. If the GAA are going to make €10m out the the proposed new structure then the players should get a slice of that. I think they deserve pay for play something like an appearance fee of €200 per game. It’s the least they deserved the millionaire footballers that play for Ireland get an appearance fee from the FAI who are perpetually flat broke. And let know one tell me the GAA are an amateur organisation cos they’re not anyone they’re well able to charge €90 for an All Ireland final ticket and €20 for a burger chips and coke inside the stadium (pre Covid) so they are raking it in all thanks to the Mayo’s and Kerry’s and Dublin and of course Tyrone’s of this world

  75. GAA director of finance Ger Mulryan believes that Conor O’Donoghue inflated his figures which is another way of saying he was false/incorrect when adding up the revenue.

    Journalist John Fogarty said he told by a number of officials that discounted tickets such as children, who can make up a quarter of attendances, have to be considered and they weren’t under O’Donoghue figures.

    At the end of day change is coming be it next year or the year after and we need a format that best for teams and players taking part not one with major flaws like proposal B IMO and not one that eventually got over the line because of the extra revenue it would make.

  76. Well, Mayomagic, it is in a parallel universe in which you invent words for what he didn’t say. I’d stop digging at this stage, if I were you.

  77. One reason why the top teams in Division 3 & 4 was proposed is probably to increase the likelihood of it being passed. Is this a bad thing? Probably not, I am beginning to think that option B is my preferred outcome.

    There have been recent changes such as the super 8’s and the back door. There is no harm to try things, we can always revert back if things do not work out.

    Ultimately, the winners are likely to be the same as previously but I do think that the Tailtean Cup could make a difference for a number of counties so long as it is properly promoted.

  78. In his interview on off the ball Conor ODonoghue had the factoring in of cheaper tickets for children. He made mention of it at one point.
    What the GAA are missing is that the ground has shifted over the past two Covid seasons.
    The attendances from div 3 and div 4 team supporters with a return to status quo will be down.
    Mayo are also not going to be packing out stadiums. People are bloody tired across the country.
    We’ve eaten this dinner, serving it up again microwaved, there’s no appetite for it he anything but a big drop in attendances.
    People have seen the Proposal B option details and they want a taste of it.
    The GAA top brass ultimately do not want proposal B to pass is my view.

  79. I would have no time for Option A, but I think that Option B has potential, but I don’t like it in it’s present form, as I don’t think that it is fair that the bottom two teams in Division 1 would get eliminated-surely we want the best teams in the last 16.My proposal would be that all teams in Division 1,the top 6 in Division 2 and the top 2 in Division 3, would make up the last 16. So, I hope Option B is rejected, as it stands. I also have reservations, as I feel it would downgrade and devalue the Provincial Championships.

  80. Greenandred, if you’re in the bottom two of league 1,after playing seven championship matches in peak summer conditions, you’ve lost more matches than won, so maybe don’t deserve to be in last 16,likewise if you’ve topped division 3/4 you’ve won a clatter of matches in summer and deserve a pop at Sam. I think plan b is by far the best option and am truly excited by it, but hearing the negatively coming from Croke Park think it’s doomed, so instead of top class exciting football of team’s playing teams at their own level, and away trips to Mayo, Kerry etc in the summer, it’s back to wading through onesided matches and odd massacre before getting one or decent games.. The system is completely broken and needs to change before fans and players have enough and start to stay away

  81. 51% of the blog who voted are aligned with Joe Brolly…….!! He does not want option B either in its current format.

  82. I’d have no issue with the bottom 2 in division 1 being eliminated. It’s the 6th place team being knocked out which doesn’t make sense. Especially when the 3rd best in division 2 is still involved along with a division 3 and 4 team.

    Overall I’d still back proposal B however. It’s better than the current format which should be reason enough to change.

  83. @Outta the blue

    Couldn’t agree more.

    The prospect of 7 top class games against the best in the country on top of the ground in the height of Summer is mouthwatering.

    Compare that to playing the best teams on mud baths in February: it’s a no brainer even if it means finishing sixth and not making the knockout stages.

    Or compared to playing Leitrim and Sligo (with all due respect to both) in Summer Versus playing Dublin and Kerry in February or March.

  84. @Wide Ball, Well I suppose when you think about it in a bit more detail, if you play 7 games and still can only manage to finish 6th in an 8 team division do you really deserve your place in the Quarter finals ahead of a team who have accumulated more points than you albeit in another division, I don’t think you do really.

    I’d be surprised if any team outside Division 1 would make it to the semi final stage, even the team which will finish 5th in Div 1 must face one of the top 4 Div 1 teams in the QF.

  85. Further to what I have already said, I cannot see the point of having Division 1 teams, who may have suffered a few narrow defeats or even been relegated on points difference in a fiercely competitive division, being replaced in the last 16 by teams from the much lower level Divisions 3 & 4,especially Division 4 winners being delivered for the annual slaughter. I think it would be better for such teams to progress thro’ the second tier “Tailteann” and Division 3, the following year. I think there would be a better balance to just drop the two relegated teams from Division 2 and replace them with the two promoted teams from Division 3,as there would not be such a big gap in quality. 0

  86. @Outta the blue. It’s a last 10 not 16 and have you taken into account that the best 8 of that best 10 happens to be in Div 1.

    The Div 3/4 teams that top their group have done so because they are playing in much weaker divsions. Place the 6th, 7th and 8th in Div 1 into Div 3, 4 and they would win it.

    The worse part is the 6th placed team in Div 1 missing out on the All-Ireland series. Could get a situation whereby 5th and 6th are level on scoring difference and head to head was drawn and on the final round one of the teams could play already relegated team.

  87. This tiresome old debate is already draining to listen to.
    The fact is that all these restructures are treating the symptom and not the cause of the problem.
    That problem exactly?
    The GAA have allowed relative standards between the tops side and the rest to grow to ridiculous proportions.
    There has never in the history of the GAA, been a bigger gap between Mayo and Sligo for example. Let alone Mayo and Leitrim.
    Most other sports have equalisation measures in place. Things like a draft system where the worst side gets the best player the following year or a salary cap so that rich teams with more resources can’t buy their way to victory. Yes I know we can’t have that in the GAA for obvious reasons.
    But it’s still all changed in the last 10 or 15 years. The mayos, dublins, Kerry’s, tyrones etc are LIGHT YEARS ahead of most other counties. In everything.
    Resources. The quality of S&C and coaching. Sponsorship for players. Holistic development as people, not just GAA players. Ability to attack amd defend as a unit. The list does on.
    About 15 years ago this trend started, and the days of Wexford putting it up to Dublin like they did between 05 and 08, or Sligo running Mayo to a point in Connacht (it happened in 2012 when we went on to reach the AI final believe it or not) are now ancient history.
    The best have ruthlessly moved ahead of the pack. Instead of putting mechanisms in place to equalise the competition, the GAA suits did the opposite – poured MAXIMUM money into dublin from 2001 to this very day.
    It would be like the NFL giving the Super Bowl winners the number one pick in the following national draft. Sound ridiculous?
    That’s basically what the GAA did with Dublin since Sean Kelly introduced it in 2001.
    The result:
    A Leinster championship that is a total farce. Dublin demolishing everyone with conveyor belts of talent. Generational players like Jack mccaffrey and Diarmuid Connolly leaving the team midway through their careers without even a blip being felt by the team in terms of performances.
    People say – why can’t we copy the hurling championship, they have tiers?
    I say – get stuffed. Football is a national sport unlike hurling. Cricket is more popular than hurling in some counties.
    But it really doesnt matter whether it’s proposal a, b or bloody z.
    Until the GAA gets its finger out to support development of players equally, in all counties, it will still be a championship that frustrates everyone with routine beatings happening all to often.
    You can dress a pig in lipstick, but it’s still a pig.

  88. The commitment of players from the top counties like Dublin Mayo and Kerry has gone to a different level entirely compared to even 10 years ago. . By commitment I mean diet, lifestyle, strength and conditioning, training etc. Why would players from counties like Sligo commit to this level? Mabye under the new championship structure it will be easier to convince players from the weaker counties to commit to this – but I would have my doubts

  89. Interesting that there seems to be a late surge in support for Proposal B, with Cork, Clare, Kildare, Meath and Tipperary all declaring support for it this evening.

    Colm Keys in today’s Indo had an interesting tweak to Proposal B, by the way, which he said could be where the format ends up and, if it does, would be very good. This change would involve the reshaping of the League back into Divisions 1A and 1B, which is an overdue reconfiguration in any event were that to happen. The 16 teams in 1A and 1B would then all have a shot at Sam, with preliminary quarter-finals a possibility to bring in the top teams in 2A and 2B as well. I could see that kind of format working well.

  90. On an article on the Irish examiner John Prenty has spoken out against voting for Proposal B. Has also suggested its better to come back with a tweaked version at the February Congress.

  91. Neither A or B. What I would like to see is 2 championships based on league standings. Only a few counties are really competing for Sam so split this up just like every county championship in the country based on merit. Anyways, provincials to become a stand alone played in March and April. Current 4 leagues format remains, as this competition works so why change it? Counties in top 2 divisions play for Sam and divisions 3 &4 into a intermediate cup played as curtain raiser to the Sam Maguire. Final rounds of the league would focus on divisions 2&3 as they would be playing for the right to compete for Sam. After that the 2 championships would take the same format as the Mayo club championship with 4 groups of 4 (containing 2 teams from each division) 3 group games one home, one away and one at a neutral venue. Following the group stages quarterfinals semifinals and final all in Croke Park. This is fair all teams get same amount of set fixtures with certainty of dates so counties can plan clubs fixtures. Start season in March end of February end it early December with club all Irelands with remainder of December January and early February out as the off season. Teams play at their own level earn the right to advance to the top tier just like the way county club championship are split on merit and works well.

  92. @MO2021, For Provincial Councils the main concern is that they might lose a few shillings but there is a way they could actually make more money from Proposal B if they actually sat down and thought about it for a minute.

    It’s a bit hypocritical when people give out about the possibility of having a Division 4 team in the QF getting hammered by a top Div 1 team, but yet they have had no issue allowing this to happen in the Provincial Championships.

    And there’s this notion that everything is well in Ulster, they must have forgotten the hammerings dished out to Down, Fermanagh, Antrim and Cavan, all beaten by an average of 12 points this year.

  93. Anyone familiar with the voting and how it works , I’m trying to get a grip of it , totally ignorant to how it works , as far as I can make out there are 183 votes and 109 are needed for a motion to pass. Cork and Dublin lead the way in having the biggest proportion of votes, I assume it goes by number of clubs in county , I see the overseas and uk make up 34 of the votes collectively, London, Lancashire, Warwickshire etc.

    Cork are in favour of b along with 11 more counties so far I think including the rossies .

    If you were running a book on it I’d have it at around 6/4 that proposal B will pass ? That’s a very amateur guess now ,thinking out loud here .

  94. @Viper.
    Nothing hypocritical about wondering why a div 4 team should be in the final shake up while teams finishing 6th 7th and 8th in div one are out.

    It’s a major flaw in the proposal in my opinion.

  95. @MO2021 John Prenty sat on the very committee that proposed the changes now being voted on, it’s a bit like Mr Frost complaining about the Northern Ireland protocol he negotiated and signed. It’s very obvious to anyone with even a passing interest in GAA politics that the ones most opposed to option B are the ones with the most to lose i.e. provisional councils. Option B might not be perfect but it’s a hell of a lot better than what we have now and it can always be tweaked in a year or two to improve it. The inter county game will go the way of club rugby if something isn’t done.

  96. @Evidently. I always have a bit of paranoia about things that can be agreed now and tweaked later. That later could be a long time coming.

    Pull the proposals off the agenda, Fix them now, and then put them back up when people are happier with them. They should never have gotten as far as they have, when every dog in the street is coming out and saying they are not perfect.
    It doesn’t have to be 100% perfect, but it sure as hell shouldn’t have obvious flaws if its been put up there as an option to bring in.

  97. @Revellino, So what if you are a Div 1 team, you’ve had your chance in 7 games to come in the top 5, if you can’t do that then it’s time to be pulling over and let a team who have managed to top their division have a chance to play against a Dublin or a Kerry.

    Of course it’s unlikely they will beat a top team but then again neither will the Div 1 teams who have came at the bottom of Div 1 either as they were given a chance and couldn’t do it.

    I had the same opinion as you a couple of weeks ago but I have to say I have changed my mind on it.

    All the Div 1 teams will look at this as full on Championship from day 1 of the “league”.

    That’s the way it should be approached.

  98. @Viper. Sure you might have beaten both Dublin and Kerry and still finish 6th in the group.

  99. @Viper.
    Were we not relegated from division one and did we not compete in the AI final last year if I’m not mistaken.

  100. @Revellino, yes we did but traditionally the league is used as a time to blood players and the only show in town for the top teams is the Championship so every top team will have to start the league on the front foot if Proposal B is passed so we can’t really compare previous league campaigns .

    I actually think Proposal B would be good for Mayo.

  101. @Viper.

    It doesn’t matter what foot any team starts the league with, under proposal B teams, 6, 7 and 8 are gone. 6, 7 and 8 are still way stronger than any Div 4 team.

    What integrity does any competition have when stronger teams are weeded out and weaker teams are put forward.

    I’m surprised at someone that had all the answers to Mayo’s problems and thinks that the best way forward in this is to weaken the competition.

    I’m not picking on you but why not pull Westport Belmullet and Breaffy out of Div one in the Mayo club and stick in Ardagh, Lahardane and kilalla and give them a shot at winning the moclair cup seeing as that’s the big one in Mayo. It would never happen and would be seen as ridiculous.

    Change should happen when the change makes some sense, but justifying the culling of some of the top teams in the country and replacing them with much weaker teams is no answer.

  102. @Revellino,

    Mayo’s problems are completely separate to the Championship set up and why should we be asking to face stronger opposition and shooting ourselves in the foot so someone else can come along and win it.

    If we’re not good enough to finish in the top 5 of division 1 with the panel we have and the money that has been spent in them then we may forget about winning an All-Ireland.

  103. The question is how many teams who finish 6th, 7th or 8th in Division 1have won the All Ireland in the last 20 years, not many I would bet.

    In reality, Mayo did not prioritise the league as they looked to focus on the championship. The reality is that the top teams in Division 3 & 4 is to increase the likelihood of this passing, and I am definitely in the option B camp as it is better for all counties and not just the perceived elite.

  104. @mikey.

    You are right Dublin having won almost half of those AI’s and a good number of the league’s as well.

    Of the other 12 all Irelands in the last 20 years, 25% of them were won by teams not in the top 5 in Div 1.

    Kerry won the AI in 2014 and finished 6th in Div 1.

    Donegal won the 2012 AI and finished 6th in division 1.

    Armagh won in the AI 2002 and were not even in Div 1.

    @ Viper.

    Your argument is swaying.

    You ask why should we shoot ourselves in the foot by facing better opposition

    Then you say.

    We should be good enough to beat anyone with our investment over the years.

    Surely if we should be good enough to beat anyone then we shouldn’t have to worry about the competition been as strong as it can be.

    I’m all for improving the championship but I just don’t see how you can improve it by taking out more competitive teams and replacing them with weaker teams.

    The Sam Maguire is there to be won by the best teams and to be contested by all counties as it currently is.

    Do you honestly think that a system, where a Sligo, could potentially go through to the AI proper, a team that we could beat by 20 points, and we could be eliminated by virtue of finishing 6th 7th or 8th in div 1, and still knowing we could beat Sligo by 20 points, can you honestly say that there is any semblance of credibility in that structure.

  105. Is that not a bit of a flawed argument , you’ve seven games in the championship to prove you’re worth , it’s not the league as it was , I dont understand the comparing league standings of old , you are not going to be wandering about trying things out in this league championship format like you did in the old league , teams will do that in the new provincial pre season . If you cant finish in top 5 out of 8 teams , you’re out , so be it and in the context of giving other counties from lower divisions a prize of finishing top so be it too . Shur ìf ye just want the top eight fighting it out go back to super 8 .

    Proposal B is the only way forward of the options available. Really hope it gets through, be also very exciting from a supporters angle , lots of top action that is meaningful. Bring it on and bring in some financial subsidy for the players also , beyond a joke at this stage when ya think of the flutes in suits who do get paid .

  106. @Revellino..i also Agree. The sensible thing to do is fix the glaring flaws now and come back with it for the February Congress.

  107. @Revellino, Ah no it’s not swaying at all and my point is that Mayo should not be worried about not being able to finish in the top 4 and 5 at worst to qualify for the QF.

    I think many people seem to be forgetting that these 7 games are both league and Championship games rolled into one and the primary focus for the top teams will be to qualify for the All-Ireland quarter finals.

    But if we do not eliminate the bottom 3 of Div 1 after 7 games then these games will not create the real championship feel that we all want.

    So lets say Mayo were to top Div 1 put out their best 15, picked up a few injuries along the way and then to be knocked out by lets say Monaghan for example who came 8th after using the league to blood players but are fresh to go for the QF, then what incentive would any of the top teams have to take these games too seriously.

    We know that the 6th team in Div 1 is better than the top team in Div 4, that is not in dispute at all but as @Mikey has correctly pointed out the reason those teams are included is that nobody is being left out and it is more likely to pass and there comes a point when you have to start eliminating teams.

    We also know Leitrim are highly unlikely to win Sam, but we also know Ireland wont win the World Cup, but should we exclude them just because of that, I don’t think so and would we eliminate Ireland if they qualified from their Group just because a better team like Germany failed to qualify from theirs, I don’t think so either.

    We need to forget this All-Ireland proper talk, that will start with your first league game because you are fighting for a place in the QF from day one and that should bring some cracking games.

    I totally understand how you feel and I had the exact same thoughts as you have in the beginning but I have to be honest and say that the more I have thought about it the more I am leaning to favouring it.

    No system will be perfect but anything is better than what we have at the moment, it’s worth a try at least.

  108. There are fairly obvious tweaks needed for Proposal B to work, but in my opinion the only chance for it to go through is now. There is no fixtures taskforce in place anymore, the CPA left the talks. Hopefully it goes through and they see how it goes next year, and then make the necessary changes.

  109. @Revellino, the historical Division 1 league positions you listed have no bearing on Proposal B at all as the league was completely separate from the championship, it would have been a different story had they been playing for a place in the QF.

    I even see James Horan is quoted as saying something similar regarding the league and Dermot Butler is quoted as saying “the fact that not all Division 1 teams would compete in the All-Ireland championship under ‘Proposal B’ was not popular”, I’m not sure they actually understand how Proposal B will work at all or that league games in Proposal B are a completely different game ball to previous years.

    They are sending out the completely wrong signals and showing a lack of confidence that Mayo are good enough to even make the top 5 of Division 1 even though the piece in the Mayo News finished by saying “The Mayo News understands that Mayo’s senior football squad have informed County Board officials that they are in favour of ‘Proposal B’.

    If they haven’t the confidence that Mayo can beat the likes of Kildare, Armagh and Monaghan then they don’t deserve to be in the Quarter finals and will need to ask themselves where did it all go wrong, hopefully they’re not spooked by the likes of Donaghy and Buckley already.

  110. Players making a lot of sound now about proposal B , think it would be a big mistake to not allow this motion pass . Players who commit so much to an amateur game really should have a say and a big say at that. I’d go as far as to say they should have a vote .

    Imagine a workplace issue without a union rep.

  111. Of those given a mandate on how to vote so far I make it 39 votes in favour , 12 votes against . Means nothing I suppose but that’s what’s known .

  112. London voting against(can’t blame them for that with the ruislip game v connacht team every year) I’m hearing now too and the shires most likely against also . Might have to change my pretend odds , proposal B now at about 5/2 , drifting rapidly .

  113. Disappointed that we are voting no, shows a lack of confidence in our team. I hope that James did not hold sway on this, I think that this shows that we are not considering the bigger picture and what is best for the broader gaa organisation.

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