Evans must drop a role


TIPPERARY’S EMPLOYMENT of John Evans as their new full-time director of football, while at the same time serving as county senior football manager, has transpired to be in breach of the GAA’s policies on amateur status, according to sources in Croke Park.

The Tipperary County Board have been informed of the conflict by Croke Park, following Saturday’s meeting of the GAA’s Management Committee, and thus leaves Evans in the awkward position of having to step down or reduce his responsibilities from one of the roles, mostly likely with immediate effect.

GAA president Christy Cooney, speaking in Croke Park yesterday, declined to comment on the actual specifics of the conflict: “There was correspondence from Tipperary before management last weekend,” he said.

“The management dealt with it and Tipperary will be written to today or tomorrow regarding the issue. We’ll see where it goes from there.

“But there is a policy in place. A very clear policy in place. We considered the matter. But we would like to communicate with Tipperary first. We’ll be communicating with Tipperary in the next day or so.”

Evans took up the full-time post of director of football on January 1st, the first such position for Tipperary, but it now appears that county boards are not permitted to appoint persons to such positions who also hold the position of county managers.

The conflict, according to a source in Croke Park, is that it is impossible to differentiate between the hours and obligations of the full-time paid position as director of football and the part-time voluntary position of a county manager.

This development will no doubt come as some surprise to Tipperary, who believed the position wasn’t in any way in breach of the GAA’s policies on amateur status. The likely compromise will be to appoint Evans on a part-time basis, provided he can continue as county manager – particularly given the progress he has made over the past two years, taking Tipperary from Division Four to Division Two of the National League.

Earlier this month Evans spoke about the responsibilities of his role, admitting it would require him to surrender the mileage expenses he was entitled to as county manager.

The Kerry native was appointed by the Tipperary County Board, under the chairmanship of Barry O’Brien, as part of the plans to implement a development programme, over 10 years; Evans committed for three years, but would also continue as manager of the senior team, along with the under-21 and intermediate sides.

It was believed at the time that Evans’ appointment wasn’t in breach of any policies on amateur status as he was effectively being employed by the association.

Dublin footballer Eamonn Fennell’s prolonged transfer attempt from O’Toole’s to St Vincent’s has hit another stumbling block after the Dublin County Board last night voted against his transfer. The vote was 33 for and 33 against, with the chairman’s casting vote going against the transfer.