National Forum

A Fair Football Championship

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Without requiring the Prov Championships to be scrapped - should they be PUT ON A 3-YR CYCLE?
During the two 'off years' we would see if we miss the Provs - and when they are played in the 3rd year, they might be more refreshing.

In the off years, have 8 groups (1 to 8) of 4, with '1 and 4 seeds' kept apart (groups are 1123 or 2344).
All 32 to the AI KO - top 2 each group get two chances, bottom 2 with one chance.
Top half of AI Series -

A) 1st grp 1 v 2nd grp 8
B) 2nd grp 2 v 1st grp 7
C) 1st grp 3 v 2nd grp 6
D) 2nd grp 4 v 1st grp 5

E) 4th grp 1 v 3rd grp 8
F) 3rd grp 2 v 4th grp 7
G) 4th grp 3 v 3rd grp 6
H) 3rd grp 4 v 4th grp 5

I) Loser A v Winner H
J) Loser B v Winner G
K) Loser C v Winner F
L) Loser D Winner E

Rd of 16 - M) Winners A v J etc.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 1140 - 20/05/2018 17:40:11    2102324

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Or, a simpler GPA 8x4 variation -
32 counties with seeding the same as their NFL div.
Draw 8 groups of 4 with BOTH a 2nd and 3rd seed in each, and EITHER a pair of 1st seeds (in groups 1 to 4) OR 4th seeds (in groups 5 to 8).
After 3 games per team, Top 3 in each group to 'AI KO Rd of 24' as follows - [and of which, 12 winners advance (1 best 'group 1-4 record' gets 'quadrant bye' to AI QFs; other 2 go Head to Head, 8 of 12)]:

A) 1st in grp 1 v 3rd in grp 8
B) 2nd in grp 4 v 2nd in grp 5
C) 3rd in grp 2 v 1st in grp 7

D) 1st in grp 3 v 3rd in grp 6
E) 2nd in grp 1 v 2nd in grp 8
F) 3rd in grp 4 v 1st in grp 5

G) 1st in grp 2 v 3rd in grp 7
H) 2nd in grp 3 v 2nd in grp 6
I) 3rd in grp 1 v 1st in grp 8

J) 1st in grp 4 v 3rd in grp 5
K) 2nd in grp 2 v 2nd in grp 7
L) 3rd in grp. 3 v 1st in grp 6

AI SFs are: Winners ABC v DEF; and GHI v JKL.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 1140 - 21/05/2018 02:04:59    2102496

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Replying To no.14:  "Gaelic sports are inherently unfair, primarily due to population distribution. But that's sport, most are unfair in some aspect.

The best you can do is try to even the playing field. Gaelic sports is about championship, we all know and love that. But it's hard to think of any championship as completely lopsided as the current Provincial-to-All Ireland football structure.

If Carlow beat Louth they're still 2 games from a Leinster final. They have to win 7 games to win an AI. Roscommon win 1 game and they're straight into a Connaught final (5 games to win AI). This is not right. There are enough disadvantages in our games without the competition structure adding further disadvantages. Success breeds success, interest and participation - it's not fair that some teams start so much closer to success every year than others.

This brings me to the point of this post.
Keep the provincial championships, but play them instead of the early-year Dr.McKenna type cup competitions that nobody cares about. College teams should not participate in these.

The All Ireland competition should remain regional in early stages - local rivalries are great! - but do it roughly geographically instead of by province - 8 teams in each region.

Northern Championship - Donegal, Derry, Antrim, Down, Armagh, Monaghan, Fermanagh, Tyrone
Western Championship - Mayo, Galway, Sligo, Cavan, Roscommon, Longford, Leitrim, London/NY
Eastern Championship - Louth, Meath, Dublin, Wicklow, Laois, Offaly, Kildare, Westmeath
Southern Championship - Wexford, Waterford, Cork, Kerry, Clare, Tipp, Limerick, Carlow

- Regional ch'ships start at QF stage. Draw seeded based on league position that year. Top 4 seeds drawn against bottom 4. Lower seeded teams have home advantage.
- 4 Winners progress to regional semi finals & final. Winner & Runner Up of final progress to All Ireland Quarter Finals. Regional winners have AI QF home advantage. Semis in Croker and final obviously.
- The 4 losers of each region QFs go into the Paidi O'Se Cup. Open draw of 16 teams, knockout. Semis and final played in Croke Park - final on the Saturday eve of All Ireland weekend. Competition to get equal promotion and coverage as All Ireland. Winning squad gets large cash/incentive prize (maybe play AI winners abroad on holiday).
- Ch'ships are run off 13 weeks from start of May. 2 weeks to prepare after club April, then max 6 games in 11 weeks. Not unreasonable at all, & crucially it's the same criteria for all teams.

Advantages
- All teams get chance to win All Ireland every year
- All teams get still get minimum 2 ch'ship games, max of 6. All must play 6 to win AI, or 5 to win the P.OSe.
- Lower seeded teams get a big home game every year (help improve interest, participation, sponsorship, atmosphere)
- Avoids group format & meaningless games - no team can lose 2 games and still win something.
- Still getting plenty big games in Croke Park (Dublin home games, Eastern Final, then 4 semis & 2 finals)
- All Ireland Final Day becomes All Ireland Final Weekend (all the additional sponsorship/promotion/tourism you can generate off that)
- Format can be easily replicated at minor. More young players get chance to win something / play at Croker.
- Retains club April and club access to players from start of August (earlier if knocked out) to end October.

Disadvantages
There will be heavy defeats in early round. But this is unavoidable/natural in any competition structure.

I can't see many problems with it honestly."
Think it's an excellent proposition. I was suggesting something similar, but calling it ALL IRELAND INTERMEDIATE FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP, which is a hotly contested competition at club level. If it works there it could work at county, but yours is better!!!!!
I had similar idea, regarding the final day, and promoting it as an all Ireland final weekend. Give it time to bed in as well.

However the most important aspect is it's promotion in the media, within gaa circles, Sunday game etc. Have it as curtain raisers, giving it equal air time etc, without the Sneerie comments from our esteemed pundits.

It's all about it's promotion. Hype it and give it the respect that these players, who give up their time, purely for the love of their counties and the game itself, deserve.

I know this is a whole different topic, but the amount of youngsters linning up to play rugby is serious. Leinster are seriously promoting their game within the province, and fair play to them. Gaa need to wake up.

Some examples this year are, st Mela college and moyne community school, here in Longford. St mels is a former hotbed of young footballers from longford and surrounding counties. It has won numerous leinster titles in the past and 7 or 8 Hogan cups. Moyne also, in the 90, contested at senior A level and reached leinster semi finals and finals.

Both Colleges have not contested a leinster colleges football final for years. Moyne are now in a B competition, while st Mels are clinging on to their status in the A competition.........both have contested leinster rugby finals this year...mels won the development cup, while moyne reached its "plate final".

I think your suggestion is a great one. For the sake of my county, who I love(and hate) supporting!!!, if nothing is put in place or attempted, with adequate respect and promotion, interest in playing for my county will be lost. The time, effort, sacrifice required to compete, with little reward, will, I fear, be lost.

Without some sort of intervention, the super 8, could quite possibly become a super 2, in the not so distant future......i for one, don't want to be able to say "I told you so" to GAA hierarchy......my compliments for your suggestions.

Longfordbaz (Longford) - Posts: 80 - 21/05/2018 23:49:25    2102859

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