National Forum

BANNING SHOULDER TACKLES?

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Should they be banned? Admittedly, against faster and more skilful opponents, for some of us, they often were all we had to fall back on, and part of me would be sad to see them go; but times have changed.

Even 30 years ago, there was more skill than you'd think in lining a man up for a good shoulder. Too far away, and he'd turn you; too close, and it was just a shove.

But players are now so fast and agile; nobody 'braces for impact' any more, they try to dodge anyway; your target is always moving / spinning away, and the chances of actually connecting with a clean shoulder to your opponent's shoulder nowadays are are slim to none. It's more likely that you will miss the shoulder and drive into someone's back or chest (or head).

Nobody relies on shoulder tackles as a key part of their defence any more. Defensively, they're not even needed.

Should we not just get rid of them? Before someone sues somebody.

essmac (Tyrone) - Posts: 1074 - 18/08/2021 16:44:36    2372796

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Replying To essmac:  "Should they be banned? Admittedly, against faster and more skilful opponents, for some of us, they often were all we had to fall back on, and part of me would be sad to see them go; but times have changed.

Even 30 years ago, there was more skill than you'd think in lining a man up for a good shoulder. Too far away, and he'd turn you; too close, and it was just a shove.

But players are now so fast and agile; nobody 'braces for impact' any more, they try to dodge anyway; your target is always moving / spinning away, and the chances of actually connecting with a clean shoulder to your opponent's shoulder nowadays are are slim to none. It's more likely that you will miss the shoulder and drive into someone's back or chest (or head).

Nobody relies on shoulder tackles as a key part of their defence any more. Defensively, they're not even needed.

Should we not just get rid of them? Before someone sues somebody."
Definitely not.

realdub (Dublin) - Posts: 8285 - 18/08/2021 16:53:50    2372799

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Replying To essmac:  "Should they be banned? Admittedly, against faster and more skilful opponents, for some of us, they often were all we had to fall back on, and part of me would be sad to see them go; but times have changed.

Even 30 years ago, there was more skill than you'd think in lining a man up for a good shoulder. Too far away, and he'd turn you; too close, and it was just a shove.

But players are now so fast and agile; nobody 'braces for impact' any more, they try to dodge anyway; your target is always moving / spinning away, and the chances of actually connecting with a clean shoulder to your opponent's shoulder nowadays are are slim to none. It's more likely that you will miss the shoulder and drive into someone's back or chest (or head).

Nobody relies on shoulder tackles as a key part of their defence any more. Defensively, they're not even needed.

Should we not just get rid of them? Before someone sues somebody."
No need to ban shoulder tackles. The rules are clear. It must be side to side. The player executing the tackle must make sure he makes side to side contact and no contact with the head. Players are red carded if they behave in any manner that is dangerous to an opponent. Players have a duty of care at all times. If their opponent has received a hospital pass then the player tackling him has to be careful. Banning a shoulder charge would ruin the game.

midfield9 (Westmeath) - Posts: 86 - 18/08/2021 16:54:54    2372800

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Eh no.

TheFlaker (Mayo) - Posts: 7297 - 18/08/2021 17:12:17    2372806

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Replying To TheFlaker:  "Eh no."
No. Implement the existing rule. Has served the Assoc. well for many decades. Less shouldering nowadays anyway. However high arm/hand tackles to the neck and head have gotten out of hand.

Gaa Fan (USA) - Posts: 618 - 18/08/2021 17:54:01    2372817

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No. Just penalise shoulder tackles into the chest, back or higher than the shoulder.

Gleebo (Mayo) - Posts: 1973 - 18/08/2021 18:22:13    2372822

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To be honest they don't bring much to the game as far as I'm concerned.

The only shoulder I'd allow is when both players are running in same dirrction challenging for the ball.

Extremely rare turnovers happen because of shoulders. In fact shoulders themselves are pretty rare. I can't remember the last time I took a shoulder playing football. I don't think most would be missed.

The only effective ones are when you catch a player just receiving the ball on the blindside. And that's pretty dangerous.

I think they're mostly a thing of the past. You look at games from the 70s and 80s and defenders and attackers loved giving each other a shoulder instead of the far more effective option of defender stopping up the man and trying to punch ball/force an over carry.

jonjon (Mayo) - Posts: 86 - 18/08/2021 18:28:18    2372824

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They are all ready rolling around on the ground if touched. What do you think would happen if shoulders were banned and they felt a bare touch on the shoulder as that is the most common way players come together when chasing a ball.
We now have great athletes but with that came sissies and no disrespect to ladies sport.

Canuck (Waterford) - Posts: 1677 - 18/08/2021 18:32:28    2372825

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They are all ready rolling around on the ground if touched. What do you think would happen if shoulders were banned and they felt a bare touch on the shoulder as that is the most common way players come together when chasing a ball.
We now have great athletes but with that came sissies and no disrespect to ladies sport.

Canuck (Waterford) - Posts: 1677 - 18/08/2021 18:43:45    2372828

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I don't think so. It takes physicality away from the game if it was banned. Also it is a great skill if done right. Séamus Moynihan of Kerry was brilliant at it. I remember Frank Cummins of Kilkenny when I was a child being so good at it. Anyone who saw James Mccarthy s shoulder v Nathan Mullins in a club game would love it. It can be seen on YouTube.

CiarraiMick (Dublin) - Posts: 2788 - 18/08/2021 18:47:18    2372829

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No they shouldn't be banned. Thankfully outcomes as happened to McLaughlin are rare, from shoulder hits. I've seen a few jaws getting broken in games I've played over the years (by few I mean a handful) and none were caused by a mis-timed shoulder. Almost all were from a swinging elbow from the player being tackled.
You say a shoulder isn't an important part of defence, but it absolutely can be.
In our Connacht Final against Mayo, Liam Silke prevented a certain goal chance with a huge shoulder on Conor Loftus as Mayo were cutting through us at will in the 2nd half. It was the only way he could have stopped him, without dragging him down. Loftus had to go off temporarily, but it was a clean hit. Now it didn't do us much good in the end, but that's not the point. :)

WanPintWin (Galway) - Posts: 1227 - 18/08/2021 18:51:46    2372830

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If the shoulder was to get banned then it would be to the detriment of both games. Id stop watching. There's little enough collisions as it is. I know when I was a kid alot of big guys chose rugby because of the greater physical contact. To be honest a shoulder slightly off is given a yellow as it is which is way over the top. The injury that happened last weekend was unfortunate and should have been red carded. But the ineptitude of a referee shouldn't signal the end of physical contact.

bloodyban (Limerick) - Posts: 1574 - 18/08/2021 18:55:52    2372831

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Replying To jonjon:  "To be honest they don't bring much to the game as far as I'm concerned.

The only shoulder I'd allow is when both players are running in same dirrction challenging for the ball.

Extremely rare turnovers happen because of shoulders. In fact shoulders themselves are pretty rare. I can't remember the last time I took a shoulder playing football. I don't think most would be missed.

The only effective ones are when you catch a player just receiving the ball on the blindside. And that's pretty dangerous.

I think they're mostly a thing of the past. You look at games from the 70s and 80s and defenders and attackers loved giving each other a shoulder instead of the far more effective option of defender stopping up the man and trying to punch ball/force an over carry."
Your totally right about the same direction point, another point is that Mayo player he'd just caught the ball in his chest so there was no way he could have defended himself, he was as open as you'll get and Small knew it. Shoulders to heads, ribs whatever are not shoulder to shoulder. If Mayo go on to win Sam they can thank Small for the kick up the backside. I've brought up the Lee Keegan v Sean Cavanagh yellow cards wrestling match before but it was nothing compared to this.

Saynothing (Tyrone) - Posts: 1018 - 18/08/2021 19:03:28    2372833

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Replying To jonjon:  "To be honest they don't bring much to the game as far as I'm concerned.

The only shoulder I'd allow is when both players are running in same dirrction challenging for the ball.

Extremely rare turnovers happen because of shoulders. In fact shoulders themselves are pretty rare. I can't remember the last time I took a shoulder playing football. I don't think most would be missed.

The only effective ones are when you catch a player just receiving the ball on the blindside. And that's pretty dangerous.

I think they're mostly a thing of the past. You look at games from the 70s and 80s and defenders and attackers loved giving each other a shoulder instead of the far more effective option of defender stopping up the man and trying to punch ball/force an over carry."
I agree.

They are obsolete and don't add anything to the game. They also prevent players soloing with the ball at speed (one of the great skills but rarely seen) which players stop doing at about u16 due to heavy challenges/assaults disguised as " fair shoulders" when a player is in middle of executing a solo.

Would be easy to implement - obviously you can still shoulder when going for the same ball but once a player has possession of ball in hand you cannot run at him with a shoulder. Refs will tell if aggressive intention or not (but I've minimum faith in GAA referees as it is).

The worst injury and incident I've ever seen on a GAA pitch was a player reaching to catch a ball player through to him, he was running at speed and unsighted to the big lump on who went through him as he brought the ball down from over his head. Compound fracture of his arm and he was in convulsions of shock on the ground. Will never forget it. Only got a yellow card as well.

Crinigan (Meath) - Posts: 1113 - 18/08/2021 20:21:21    2372850

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It is essentially banned now after this silly outcry as the player in possession just needs to turn towards the other player at the last second and its a red card for his opponent.

bad.monkey (USA) - Posts: 4536 - 18/08/2021 20:27:35    2372851

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I think they should ban the multiple account holders on here for a start,
if we take the physical contact out of Gaelic we'll end up like the oul women that play the soccer.

Tirchonaill1 (Donegal) - Posts: 1822 - 18/08/2021 20:55:25    2372862

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Replying To bloodyban:  "If the shoulder was to get banned then it would be to the detriment of both games. Id stop watching. There's little enough collisions as it is. I know when I was a kid alot of big guys chose rugby because of the greater physical contact. To be honest a shoulder slightly off is given a yellow as it is which is way over the top. The injury that happened last weekend was unfortunate and should have been red carded. But the ineptitude of a referee shouldn't signal the end of physical contact."
Collisions ye want, try bumping cars. Your big boys might have chose rugby because they had no skill, tuck the ball under their arm and dose like a bull, some skill in that.

Saynothing (Tyrone) - Posts: 1018 - 18/08/2021 21:13:19    2372872

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Replying To essmac:  "Should they be banned? Admittedly, against faster and more skilful opponents, for some of us, they often were all we had to fall back on, and part of me would be sad to see them go; but times have changed.

Even 30 years ago, there was more skill than you'd think in lining a man up for a good shoulder. Too far away, and he'd turn you; too close, and it was just a shove.

But players are now so fast and agile; nobody 'braces for impact' any more, they try to dodge anyway; your target is always moving / spinning away, and the chances of actually connecting with a clean shoulder to your opponent's shoulder nowadays are are slim to none. It's more likely that you will miss the shoulder and drive into someone's back or chest (or head).

Nobody relies on shoulder tackles as a key part of their defence any more. Defensively, they're not even needed.

Should we not just get rid of them? Before someone sues somebody."
They're pretty close to being banned anyways from what I've seen so why not make it official?.
You're right too, it probably is only a matter of time before legal action is taken.
I mentioned it in another thread and I wasn't joking, I predict that physical contact will be banned in sport within the next 50 years so banning shoulder charges, which as we've seen can go wrong, is inevitable.

Galway9801 (Galway) - Posts: 957 - 18/08/2021 21:36:02    2372877

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Take a look at the shoulder Marty Clarke took in the AFL , type in Martin Clarke KO youtube, unreal

germac (Down) - Posts: 358 - 18/08/2021 22:03:19    2372888

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It will eventually be banned, what with whiplash concussive effect, a few litigations or whiff of them and they will be gone.

arock (Dublin) - Posts: 4733 - 18/08/2021 22:03:24    2372889

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