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Future Of Leinster Championship

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I am not surprised that Meath got hammered. Given some of the posts on this site from the Meath men, eg Royal Dunne.

galwayford (Galway) - Posts: 2315 - 22/11/2020 11:44:14    2312614

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The GAA have a big problem coming up and they aren't watching it. Dublin will win the next ten Leinster championships without any difficulty, so who is going to show up to a Leinster final...the crowds will dwindle in each province and you'll see empty swathes of seats at All Ireland semi finals, it's already happening. They have made the championship a foregone conclusion due to their funding of Dublin. Therefore the money dries up for the continued feeding of the monster
You'll have young fellas in Westmeath and Kildare etc etc walking away from the game and playing soccer or rugby, and why wouldn't they.
It's good enough for the Leinster council, they've insisted Dublin have nearly all their games in croke park, Westmeath couldn't even have home advantage against them this year in an empty pitch.
Some responsibility lies with Kildare and Meath though, huge counties. What on earth are they doing that they can't follow Mayo and Donegal in being competitive.

republicofcloone (Leitrim) - Posts: 375 - 22/11/2020 11:49:11    2312616

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Two arguments here really. Is Dublin's power the cause of an uncompetitive Leinster championship or is the the rest of Leinster being weaker. For me it is a bit of both, would any of the other Leinster teams have been competitive in the other 3 provences over those last 10 years?? No they wouldn't. Kildare came closest with a good manager but he left. Would Dublin have won 10 Ulster, Connacht or Munster titles in a row,? well perhaps but unlikely, in any event they would not be winning by an average of 15 points or whatever it is.
This means that in a normal year Dublin have May, June and July off to prepare for 4 or 5 games in August/Sept. Kerry had this luxury (through no fault of their own) for years having a 3 game championship to prepare for annually. The fact is Leinster football in general is not competitive on the national stage, as hard as that is to take. That is an issue for the Leinster Council to address in the first instance.
On a wider issue in reality there are only 6 or 7 teams with any chance of winning an all ireland, much the same as the Hurling. For the rest the competition is becoming ever more irrelevant

mhunicean_abu (Monaghan) - Posts: 969 - 22/11/2020 11:51:10    2312617

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I'm old enough to remember the good old days when, from school kickabouts to county matches, the team with the most skilled players always won. It's no longer like that. In the modern game, certainly in my own county, it's an open secret that some of the most skilled players are left off in favour of robust workhorses with good (but not stellar) skill. The level of team-work now is extraordinary; as is the conditioning. Rock used to be a stringbean, now he's ripped and fit to compete for 50:50 ball. I've no doubt that the Dublin lads could do one-on-one dazzler stuff, and score outrageous scores, if they wanted to; but those days are gone, and there is less magic for the fans as a result. The template now is 100% teamwork and efficient working of the ball into the scoring zone for relatively straightforward scores.

In order to force teams into taking on lower percentage shots, you first have to be able to match them for on the pitch tactical awareness and conditioning. Otherwise, they'll walk over you, and individual skill counts for very little, when faced with professional level of fitness and tactical awareness. Only 4 counties currently - Kerry, Mayo, Tyrone and Donegal - are remotely near in those areas. Against Dublin, I'm afraid all the other counties look like amateurs v professionals.

I don't for an instant buy the idea that last night's scoreline reflects solely a skill and natural talent gap between Meath and Dublin. Meath have some excellent footballers.

The GAA, if it is to retain any cultural relevance and not to just end up endorsing a downwards pro-elitism trend like the Rugby and like pro soccer, has to intervene centrally. Every county needs access to the latest developments (and equipment) and thinking in terms of nutrition, physical preparation, skills and tactical preparation. Whether this means paying for dedicated people to go in and improve weaker counties, or whether such inputs could be provided on a consultancy "train the trainers" approach is a moot point. But it's very clear that leaving it up to individual counties is far too dependent on choices made by individual county boards; and it's clear to me that not enough county boards even know what to do to get up to Dublin's standard in the first place.

That of course needs to be reinforced with common structures and approaches to youth development.

It's in all our interests to have 32 strong counties. Only then will the old-fashioned god-given talents be in a position to make a difference. Currently, the game at the top end is starting to remind me of Rugby league - identikit, ripped 20-somethings all playing to a plan that depends on the ability to play with power and speed for the full game.

It's why Formula 1 bores me nowadays - the back marker teams simply lack the resources and knowledge to compete in a meaningful sense. Far better to impose tight rules on engine development and spending, so that all cars are much closer in potential, and then it's truly down to the individuals with flair to make a difference.

The GAA suffers, not only from a funding gap, but also from the knowledge gaps mentioned above. Time to run the game much more centrally and stop leaving it up to county boards.

I'll get my coat ...

essmac (Tyrone) - Posts: 1141 - 22/11/2020 11:54:02    2312619

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Replying To Daith:  "Donegal havent given Dublin a game since 2014. Kerry and Mayo got a few draws when Dublin were operating at 50%. That doesnt count as meaningful competition. Remember when Kildare were praised for only being beaten by 9 points in a Leinster final?

If county boards want change there is only one way to do it and that is to refuse to honour fixtures v Dublin or pull senior teams from the championship altogether. Leave Dublin play on their own and give the kids who sacrifice their social lives for nothing in other counties their lives back. I am sick of this farce."
A very sad post, the GAA is a lot bigger than anything you are saying. The snobbish assumption is everyone just plays football, they dont and certainly not in Dublin. So what you are offering is lying down as a doormat or just give up. All the advantages you claim Dublin have only apply to Football not hurling on the pitch. The answer is not capping Dublin to bring Dublin down to the pretty low standards in other counties. BTW some Dublin clubs have a bigger weekend fixture list than a lot of county boards. Its a diffetent beast. But lying down, is just ridiculous.

arock (Dublin) - Posts: 4772 - 22/11/2020 11:56:55    2312621

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To be honest I think the quality of football in the country is poor. I the 90s and 00s we had so many good teams all capable of beating anyone on a given day. Kerry tyrone armagh Galway meath cork down derry donegal Dublin All won all irelands. But since then more young people playing rugby soccer and other sports in rural counties and gaa concentrating money to make Dublin better at turn of the century and neglecting smaller counties.
It's not dublins fault it's the gaa fault.

tom84 (Cavan) - Posts: 306 - 22/11/2020 12:01:24    2312624

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Replying To Daith:  "An absolute shambles again tonight, as it has been for years now. The game is dead in 11 counties in Leinster. At what stage do the GAA address this? At what stage do the most deluded fans who claim they are GAA people recognise their 10 in a row Leinsters and 6 in a row all irelands mean very little. Population, x 16 funding, x 20 times the sponsorship, centres of excellence and stadium provided free of charge , but Dubs will still tell the rest of us we have to get our act together.

I honestly can't see why any county honours any fixture against Dublin. What was the point in Meath turning up tonight for example?"
Why haven't the Dublin hurlers won the all-Ireland so if all you say is true, Dublin footballers are just the best team in the history of the gaa.

cityman73 (Limerick) - Posts: 626 - 22/11/2020 12:01:50    2312625

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Replying To Daith:  "An absolute shambles again tonight, as it has been for years now. The game is dead in 11 counties in Leinster. At what stage do the GAA address this? At what stage do the most deluded fans who claim they are GAA people recognise their 10 in a row Leinsters and 6 in a row all irelands mean very little. Population, x 16 funding, x 20 times the sponsorship, centres of excellence and stadium provided free of charge , but Dubs will still tell the rest of us we have to get our act together.

I honestly can't see why any county honours any fixture against Dublin. What was the point in Meath turning up tonight for example?"
Ive been following your posts for a long time Daith, and I think youre a guy with your finger on the pulse of the problems of the game. The Leinster championship is dead. I, personally, see no way back for it now. I said that in haste after last night's game but after reflecting on it more, I double down on that idea. It's finished. It has been finished for years.

Now, I want to say that the game last night went further than football for the lads involved on the Meath side. It was like in that 70 minutes a devolution occured. These poor unfortunate lads. People in Meath very reluctantly (deluded fans aside) built up this team after being relatively competetive for the last 18 months. We got out of division 2, granted, and showed a level of peformance against 10/11 division 1 teams in a row, albeit with no wins. We took apart Wicklow and Kildare in the championship and were facing into this game as a free shot, on the anniversary of Bloody Sunday nonetheless. I genuinely expected a contest. Dublin would win but Meath would put up 1-13 or 2-11 or so. A very respectable score.

Then the worst possible outcome came to pass. I believe that all of the progress, although slight, will be in jeopardy after that game. And Dublin were still only at maybe 75-80%. It was mortifying. It was like watching Brazil take on the Faroe Islands. I agree with many national posters regarding Meath; Perhaps its time we look in the mirror and set ourselves smaller boundaries, the bubble was busted last night. The House of cards collapsed.

We have a lot of good, talented, and interested young lads. We have 50/60 clubs. We have a large, spread-out population. We have a wealth of history but thats all it is. History. Last night was the worst result I have ever seen as a Meath fan and it isnt the fault of the players. I still retain mighty respect for them. Believe it or not we were on a worse trajectory until Andy McEntee took on the job and in spite of the fact we have no kickout strategy and lack panache in some areas of the field, we're better than we could be. Thats the reality now we have to face.

A good, long look in the mirror.

Best of luck to our neighbours Cavan today in the Ulster. Give them hell.
And good luck to Dublin as they steamroll toward the 6.

Young_gael (Meath) - Posts: 496 - 22/11/2020 12:03:02    2312627

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The league positions dont lie, Meath are bottom Div 1 and there are no other teams in top tier. I would listen more to some of these arguments if Leinster teams were higher up they are not. The reality is they just not good enough how would Meath do in say Ulster? Basically people are making the case solid for a two/three tier championship aka ladies football.

arock (Dublin) - Posts: 4772 - 22/11/2020 12:11:07    2312633

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Take Dublin aside - the best team to play the game, a golden generation, a team going for 6 in a row and I think have won 7 of the last 9 All Ireland's. If Dublin were dominating Leinster only then there is a problem but they've dominated nationally.

Next season Ulster have four teams in Div 1; with two out West and I fancy Cork to join Div 1 next summer along with Mayo retaking their place. Meath and Kildare in particular are two counties who should be consistent Div 1 teams; are they bigger counties than Monaghan for example?

There is a problem with Leinster football; why aren't the structures in place to have Meath as a stable Div 1, yearly QF team? They can't blame Dublin for being a Div 2 county bar one season in Div 1; this year when they were out their depth.

The GAA need to step in and see what is happening in Meath and Kildare. If the likes of Monaghan (remarkable achievment) can have a decade in Div 1, yearly QF's, a few SF"s and genuinely competing then why aren't Meath and Kildare competing for the same?

If we get Kildare and Meath back where they should be then we might improve the Leinster championship; the problem is Dublin started dominating Leinster in 2002 but didn't win an All Ireland until 2011. When Dublin fall into the pack teams outside the province will catch them but as Dublin reduce their All Ireland wins, they'll still dominate Leinster as there is something amiss with the other counties structures.

It can't all blamed on Dublin.

sam1884 (UK) - Posts: 943 - 22/11/2020 12:11:37    2312635

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Nothing will change until some team tries something radical.Like playing the ball only on the ground.Yes -soccer style.Would it work?....well what they're doing now isn't working. Dublin will eat you alive if you play them at their game.The game has been so radicalised in my lifetime that it is unrecognisable from the original concept of the game.

worple (Roscommon) - Posts: 311 - 22/11/2020 12:26:00    2312639

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Credit where it's due , Dublin were fantastic last night and destroyed Meath all over the field.
If I were looking at this from a Donegal perspective though I would still see this as a great opportunity as Dublin have not been tested at all in Leinster and motivation will not be a problem.
Donegal will be sure to make Dublin work a lot harder than Meath did and are a far superior team. Forget the league game that was no indication of where these two teams are at at the moment.
Meath may well compete in the league in division 2 but not in the championship if that display was anything to go by.

catch22 (USA) - Posts: 2148 - 22/11/2020 12:32:02    2312642

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Replying To Joxer:  "Kildare people waving the white flag of surrender would be nothing new. Is Connaught or Munster that much different? One or two teams dominating. Mayo have won Connaught 6 times since 2011. Kerry have won Munster 8 times since 2011. Doesn't seem to be much competition in those provinces either. This Dublin team is special but Kerry almost pipped them last year and Mayo should have pipped them twice in finals. Had these games fallen the other way there would be no talk of dominance and the usual defeatist excuses, population and money. Mayo, Kerry and Donegal have all proven that Dublin can be got at but there is a gap between these top tier teams and the also rans like Kildare. That's not Dublin's fault."
Connacht has been competitive recently to be fair, no one has retained the Nestor Cup since 2015 and Mayo, Galway and Ros have all been in Division One in that time. I agree with the rest of the post.

Gleebo (Mayo) - Posts: 2138 - 22/11/2020 12:53:39    2312650

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Replying To jimbodub:  "There is no dount Dublin have the financial clout to put into great footballers

This is of course important

But that's a far broader issue

We're not the only ones fully maximizing our natural potential

There's massive money being spent on teams and we're far from the only team with financial advantages over other teams. Any top team are now spending big and well above most.

If financial fairness is to be examined it surely has to be across the board. Including the brown envelopes..."
Big difference is Dublin also have more clubs and bigger resources than many counties.
I was working at punchestown races few years back with tote and was working in one of the big tents where gaa groups had fundraisers and one of the dublin gaa clubs had a bigger fundraiser or at least as big as one of the GAA counties.#

No doubt if looking at finances it must be nationwide but its clear to everyone that the dubs have resources far more than nearly all other counties.
Dublin has 5 times more people than all counties bar Cork, Antrim and Down.

KillingFields (Limerick) - Posts: 2729 - 22/11/2020 12:58:28    2312656

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A few points
If the money and coaching refered to was such a key the presumably dublin would be very dominant at minor and they are not. In the 2010s they won one all ireland. (I'm not sure how they lost to anyone in 2011 with the team they had). They have been much better at under 20/21 level winning four. They seem to be doing something between minor and 20 level. Maybe they have pathway programs that others can learn from. They probably have a logistical advantage here in that all their players are at home. Meath were horrible in the under 20s earlier in the year. They maybe need to look at this.

I see before lock down meath beat dublin well in the minors so maybe there are green shoots there. Keep working this team and get a few through to senior. Meath and kildare have no problems with numbers. The money started to be spent on the East leinster project should start to beat fruit as well.

I know meath have plans to develop pairc tailtean which is needed but don't go excessive the way they seem to want to go. One decent covered stand and terracing around the rest of the pitch is fine. Focus on player development more.

Ulsterchamps_32 (Donegal) - Posts: 640 - 22/11/2020 13:05:12    2312660

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Replying To jimbodub:  "There is no dount Dublin have the financial clout to put into great footballers

This is of course important

But that's a far broader issue

We're not the only ones fully maximizing our natural potential

There's massive money being spent on teams and we're far from the only team with financial advantages over other teams. Any top team are now spending big and well above most.

If financial fairness is to be examined it surely has to be across the board. Including the brown envelopes..."
I'd be more interested in seeing a full scale investigation/documentary into what happened Leinster football since 2000.

Dublin's finances would potentially be apart of that (eg how much were they spending per player at all levels in 2000 compared to 2020 and how does that compare to the other 10 teams).

But it would have to completely open and honest from all viewpoints. Meath and Kildare in particular can't just point the finger at Dublin's finances, we've gone from competing with the top teams and making AI finals to hapless pawns, we must have made some poor decisions along the way to!

I don't think we're going to get any such investiagtions though and even if ee did I doubt we'd get genuine facts or figures from any of the 11 teams involved.

Htaem (Meath) - Posts: 8657 - 22/11/2020 13:06:18    2312662

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Replying To Stmunnsriver:  "thats why i asked a while ago if u pumpped say 200 million in to carlow or leitrim could they win a senior all ireland?"
It'd take 15-20 years and it'd be no guarantee but I think it'd be possible. 200m over 20 years is 10m a year. It's like 3 years of Dublin's total spending on development projects.

200m is a lot of money. The only only

Whammo86 (Antrim) - Posts: 3799 - 22/11/2020 13:10:54    2312666

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Replying To Daith:  "Donegal havent given Dublin a game since 2014. Kerry and Mayo got a few draws when Dublin were operating at 50%. That doesnt count as meaningful competition. Remember when Kildare were praised for only being beaten by 9 points in a Leinster final?

If county boards want change there is only one way to do it and that is to refuse to honour fixtures v Dublin or pull senior teams from the championship altogether. Leave Dublin play on their own and give the kids who sacrifice their social lives for nothing in other counties their lives back. I am sick of this farce."
In 2016 we were our own worst enemy and ended up losing by five points, but Mannion got a goal in the 75th minute to put the extra gloss on that one. I really feel that was one that got away from a Donegal POV. Dublin were there for the taking that day.

Absolute insult to Mayo to suggest those epic finals were the Dubs operating at 50%. We get it, psychologically you're beaten before you even take to the pitch against the Dubs. That's not the case for a few other counties in the country, sorry if that upsets you.

JoeSoap (Donegal) - Posts: 1432 - 22/11/2020 13:11:25    2312668

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Replying To tom84:  "To be honest I think the quality of football in the country is poor. I the 90s and 00s we had so many good teams all capable of beating anyone on a given day. Kerry tyrone armagh Galway meath cork down derry donegal Dublin All won all irelands. But since then more young people playing rugby soccer and other sports in rural counties and gaa concentrating money to make Dublin better at turn of the century and neglecting smaller counties.
It's not dublins fault it's the gaa fault."
That is just not true. I doubt Meath of 96 or Galway of 98 would beat even the likes of Roscommon or ourselves in Tyrone. The training these days is very professional. They didn't have the same standard in the 90's. I even think the kerry team of the 78-81 and mid 80's team would be scuttered by kildare. It is all weights, training, coaches, sport psychologists etc. The game has got better, faster etc..the standard is higher just Dublin are far out front, it is that simple. To say those days were better is just being nostalgic, those days were more competitive. Now we just have 1 team who remind me of man united in the 00's but the exception is there's no real Arsenal to contest them.

GameofTyronesIsBackhere (Tyrone) - Posts: 46 - 22/11/2020 13:23:19    2312683

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Replying To tom84:  "To be honest I think the quality of football in the country is poor. I the 90s and 00s we had so many good teams all capable of beating anyone on a given day. Kerry tyrone armagh Galway meath cork down derry donegal Dublin All won all irelands. But since then more young people playing rugby soccer and other sports in rural counties and gaa concentrating money to make Dublin better at turn of the century and neglecting smaller counties.
It's not dublins fault it's the gaa fault."
To be fair Tom, most posters don't say it's Dublin's fault - they acknowledge that this has been created by the GAA. What irks people is the refusal of many Dublin supporters to recognize the huge advantages they've been given relative to other counties across the county. Dublin have won 10 Leinster's in a row and 14 out of 15. Hard to see them not winning at least another 5 on the trot. They've won 7 of the last 9 All Ireland's (and soon to be 8 out of 10, let's be honest). Their next 2 games will demonstrate how far ahead they are of the teams outside of Leinster. Attendances at Leinster semis and finals games had dropped significantly up to last year and that will further accelerate. The Super 8 attendances in the second year were also suffering. People aren't interested in watching one-sided games.

The GAA made the bed and we are all now lying in it.

jimski (Kildare) - Posts: 379 - 22/11/2020 13:26:49    2312686

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