'Why not cancel the inter-county season and allow each county to have a brilliant club campaign?'
Just a few thoughts and queries I have on the new Louth GAA format.
Why can there not be promotion and relegation in the league? To do so would mean only one extra game for the two teams that finish bottom of the groups and this way it keeps all games competitive, even after the championship.
The current format has a duration of 13 weeks, assuming there is a week’s break between the completion of the groups and the quarter-final, and another week’s break between the semi and the finals of championships.
By putting all respective championship teams into a ‘league’ and playing 11 games weekly, like they do in north-east soccer league, with a week’s break between each of the knockout rounds of the championship, you could have a 16-week season where every game is competitive. You could have a format which would ensure the top eight in each league qualifies for the quarter-finals of the various championships.
You could seed the positions you finish in to keep matches competitive right until the end and either relegate the team that finishes bottom or, again, play-off the bottom four.
I believe the new format has been rushed to completion to allow for the inter-county scene, which only caters for a small percentage of players. It may be easy for me, a club player, to say that, but still, I think it’s a logical conclusion to draw.
What if Peter Fitzpatrick came out and said Louth GAA will not enter inter-county teams for 2020 and subsequently have a whopper of a club season in the county. He’d likely receive the majority’s support, or maybe he wouldn’t?
I wonder, then, would the other weaker counties - Wicklow, Waterford, Carlow (who have no manager at present), etc - follow suit?
On a bigger scale, why not cancel the inter-county season and allow each county to have a brilliant club campaign? There could be provincial club championships to follow and then, in 2021, the county programme could start afresh. Would many complain if this were to be the case?
I know this won’t happen - the bottom line is that money talks loudest - but still, I think my argument is an issue for public debate.
Louth GAA club footballer.