All-Ireland finals set for last two weekends in August

Intercounty season will get underway on May 8th with the Allianz Hurling League

Dublin will look to make it seven All-Irelands in a row. Photo: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

All-Ireland finals in hurling and football on the last two weekends in August, a hurling league campaigning that begins on May 8th and a straight knockout competition in football are among the main components of the GAA’s revised master fixture plan for 2021.

Following a series of consultative meetings this week, it was agreed the All-Ireland senior hurling championship final will take place on the weekend of August 21st/ 22nd, with the senior football final the following weekend – August 28th/ 29th.

Like the revised 2020 format, the provincial football championships will be straight knockout with no qualifiers, no quarter-finals or Super-8s, and without London or New York involved. Like last year there will be no room for replays either.

The much delayed intercounty season will begin with the Allianz Hurling Leagues on May 8th, three weeks after the permitted return to intercounty training, as was agreed by the principal competing counties.


There will be no Division 1 hurling final and there will be either joint winners for 2021, or if the teams that win Division 1A and Division 1B meet in the championship, this will double as a league final.

The Allianz Football League and Division 3 of the hurling league commence a week later on May 15th. The entire league season will finish on the weekend of June 19th/20th with the football finals.

Divisions will be split into North and South as originally planned in December. Four teams will be in each group based on geography with three Round Robin games per team. The top two in each divisional group will advance to the league semi-finals followed by a league final.

The bottom two in each divisional group will play relegation semi-finals with the two losers of those matches relegated. The bottom teams in Division 4 will play a Shield semi-final and final.

League finals will only be played on June 19th/20th if counties involved are not playing in the championship the following weekend. If they are, then joint winners will be declared for Division 1 and joint winners and promotion for Divisions 2, 3, and 4.

After that, the provincial football and hurling championships begin a week later on June 26th. There will be no Tailteann Cup in 2021.

The Leinster and Munster hurling championship finals will take place on the weekend of July 17th/18th with the Munster and Connacht football finals the following weekend (July 24th/25th) and the Ulster and Leinster football finals a week after that on July 31st/August 1st along with the All-Ireland senior hurling quarter-finals.

On August 7th/ 8th the hurling semi-finals will be played with the football semi-finals a week later (August 14th/ 15th) followed by both All-Ireland senior finals over the next two weekends.

The club championships will then begin on the first weekend in September, and run over the rest of the year and into 2022 with the All-Ireland senior club championship finals taking place on February 12th/13th.

The All-Ireland football championships will also see the champions of Ulster and Munster meeting in one semi-final and Leinster and Connacht in the other.

The hurling championship, as per 2020, will have qualifiers while the hurling league will also have five games for each county. The Division 1 Hurling League relegation playoff will be played as curtain raiser to All-Ireland SHC semi-final in August.

Divisions 2 and 3 will not have league finals either. The top team in each Division will be crowned champions. The bottom team in Divisions 2A, 2B, and 3A will be relegated.

It was also agreed the county and Provincial Club Championships will be played in the months of September, October, November, and December. The entire intercounty fixtures programme will be run off in a 20-week period (compared to 16 weeks last year) and guarantees a minimum of five games for each senior county football and hurling team, and in most cases a guaranteed six games in hurling.