Inter-county players now in favour of two-tier All-Ireland football championship

THE GAA MOVED one step closer to a two-tier football championship today after the Gaelic Players Association announced the majority of inter-county footballers are now in favour of the move. 

Division 4 teams unanimously voted to boycott a potential ‘B’ championship before it went in front of Congress in 2016, but the opinion of players has shifted since then.

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The GPA released figures today which revealed that 60% of inter-county footballers now support a move to a tiered championship. 

After surveying its members, the inter-county player body found that 90% of hurlers were satisfied they had a sufficient number of games against teams of equal standard, while just 53% of footballers said the same.

The survey also found that 50 squads were expected to train with their county as well as club during the ’club only month’ in April. Three-quarters of players said the off-season is too short, while there’s a growing prevalence of hip and groin injuries.

“The fixtures conversation is an important one and players are at the heart of it,” said GPA chief executive Paul Flynn. 

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“We wanted to hear the players’ experience of the 2018 season so that we could bring it to the attention of the GAA and push hard for player centred change.

“We now have a strong mandate from our members to demand real and meaningful change to the fixtures schedule to allow players to better manage the intense demands of the modern game.

“We all want to ensure that the game flourishes into the future. It’s essential that the players voice is heard and respected by the decision makers in the GAA and the GPA will be focused hard on ensuring that this happens.”

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