Donegal unsuccessful in attempt to rearrange Dublin venue
Issues highlighted will be reviewed by Central Council
Croke Park will host all four of the opening Super 8 fixtures. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho
The Donegal County Board have been unsuccessful in their attempt to rearrange one the ‘Super 8s’ All-Ireland football quarter-finals, where Dublin are scheduled to play two of their three games in Croke Park.
Donegal officials were in Croke Park earlier today to “seek clarification” on how Dublin can treat Croke Park as both a neutral and a home venue. Donegal are set to play Dublin at Croke Park in the opening series of games, the CCCC fixing the clash of Leinster and Ulster champions for Saturday, July 14th with a 7.0pm throw-in.
In a statement from Croke Park, the GAA confirmed that a meeting between senior officials and members of the Donegal County Committee took place in Croke Park.
“It was accepted as part of these discussions, that the rules in relation to the new All Ireland SFC Quarter Final Round Robin system had been democratically adopted at Congress 2017 and that these provided for all Round 1 games to be played at Croke Park and each county to subsequently have one home and one away game.
“While Donegal challenged how any team could nominate Croke Park as their home venue, it was acknowledged that there was nothing in Rule to prohibit this.
“Donegal also requested in light of the issues they highlighted, that a review of the first year of the new championship structures be held by Central Council later in the year and that all counties be invited to submit their observations in this context.
“It was agreed that the issues highlighted by Donegal would be considered as part of this process and that if Central Council collectively felt that non-structural changes to aspects of the Championship were required, that these could be put to Annual Congress in 2019 for consideration.”
All four opening fixtures in the Super 8s will be played at Croke Park, with Kerry’s game against Galway going head-to-head with the World Cup final on Sunday, with a 4pm throw-in.
The other two games will involve the winners of this weekend’s Round 4 qualifiers playing against each other, with a game taking place before the Saturday and Sunday fixtures involving the provincial champions.
Donegal released a brief statement late on Monday night which questioned why Dublin will play twice at Croke Park in their three Super 8 games: “ Following the announcement today by the CCCC regarding venues for the All-Ireland Quarter-Final Group stage (Super 8’s) games.
“The intention of the meeting is to ensure a level playing field for every team who will qualify for the All-Ireland Quarter-Final Group Stage and ensure that no team has any advantage over any other team.”