GPA say players want change to provincial structures

Any change which still retains the provincial structure is only moving the deck chairs

Tipperary hurler Noel McGrath, left, Mary Claire Rennick, second left, Childhood Cancer Foundation, Laura Cullinane, Childhood Cancer Foundation, and Dessie Farrell, right, Chief Executive of the GPA, at the launch of a new charity partnership between the GPA and Childhood Cancer Foundation. Photo: Ramsey Cardy

Tipperary hurler Noel McGrath, left, Mary Claire Rennick, second left, Childhood Cancer Foundation, Laura Cullinane, Childhood Cancer Foundation, and Dessie Farrell, right, Chief Executive of the GPA, at the launch of a new charity partnership between the GPA and Childhood Cancer Foundation. Photo: Ramsey Cardy

 

Gaelic Players Association chief Dessie Farrell believes the game of football is being suffocated by its restrictive and outdated provincial championship structures.

Last weekend’s one-sided games in both Leinster and Munster have prompted a national debate about the long-term viability of the current provincial model. Farrell said the clear message coming from inter-county players was that the time for change was upon us, and the GPA would shortly submit its own championship proposals to Central Council.

He said they still have to be signed off by members but noted that any change “which still retains the provincial structure is only moving the deck chairs around”.

He said he sensed an openness to change at the most recent Central Council gathering when he was encouraged by the soundings from top officials on the issue of championship overhaul.

Farrell also spoke strongly about the need to eliminate verbal abuse from the game.

“There was always a bit of mouthing if you like but not to the extent it is going on at the minute.”

* Dessie Farrell was speaking at the launch of the Gaelic Players Association’s link up with Childhood Cancer Foundation.

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