National Forum

Jim Mcguinness-Right As Usual On Championship

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Replying To valley84:  "That would need provincial councils to stop doing draws 6 months in advance"
Yeah it would. The funny thing is provincial councils want to keep the provincial championships. All winter people were giving out about Sligo or Leitrim having an easy run to a Connacht final.
If the provincial draw was the morning after the league finals and using league placing for seeding, provincial finalists on balance would be fairer. If any Division 4 county beats a higher seed to make a provincial final, they will have more respect for it.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7822 - 14/07/2023 16:21:07    2494399

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Replying To valley84:  "That would need provincial councils to stop doing draws 6 months in advance"
Can't argue with that.

ORIELMAN85 (Monaghan) - Posts: 109 - 14/07/2023 20:18:31    2494430

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Replying To legendzxix:  "Rugby EPCR have come up with a better format. 6 teams play the 4 teams that are not in their regular league. The previous format wasn't good.
UEFA have made format mistakes before. For a few years they had 8 groups of 4 and then 4 groups of 4. The second group stage was a turn off. Their current plan is for one group of 36, playing 8 games or something like that. They might have to break it down into smaller groups.
Interestingly Cavan and Leitrim have something like 10 teams in one group. All teams play 4 games. That's more manageable and easy enough to follow."
UEFA CL - If 'simplicity' was the goal, playing 8 opponents once could have easily been achieved with 4 groups of 9 - but they didn't go for it.

Rugby EPCR - That horrible structure in recent years was COVID influenced - two pools of 12, with each team playing only 2 of 11 pool opponents twice. A team's position in a 12-team table is determined with '9 pool teams they didn't play' but excludes '12 others in the other group they didn't play'. Where is the logic in including the 9 but excluding the 12 - just nuts?

GAA - I'd like some kind of a combined league/ championship group stage - another idea, say, a 3-tier structure with divs of 12-8-12 (all play a mix of 8 games before KO) - in Tier 1 KO, 2nd 4 to Prelim QFs, top 4 Double Chance to SFs/QFs; Tier 2 KO, 3rd 4 div 1 to Prelim QFs, 1st 4 div 2 to Double Chance (SF 4 in div 1 next year); and Tier 3 KO, 2nd 4 div 3 v 2nd 4 div 2 in Prelim QFs, 4 Prelim winners v 1st 4 div 3 in QFs (4 QF winners in div 2 next year). Prov Championships played separately and early, if they have to be retained.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2570 - 15/07/2023 18:00:01    2494551

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Replying To omahant:  "UEFA CL - If 'simplicity' was the goal, playing 8 opponents once could have easily been achieved with 4 groups of 9 - but they didn't go for it.

Rugby EPCR - That horrible structure in recent years was COVID influenced - two pools of 12, with each team playing only 2 of 11 pool opponents twice. A team's position in a 12-team table is determined with '9 pool teams they didn't play' but excludes '12 others in the other group they didn't play'. Where is the logic in including the 9 but excluding the 12 - just nuts?

GAA - I'd like some kind of a combined league/ championship group stage - another idea, say, a 3-tier structure with divs of 12-8-12 (all play a mix of 8 games before KO) - in Tier 1 KO, 2nd 4 to Prelim QFs, top 4 Double Chance to SFs/QFs; Tier 2 KO, 3rd 4 div 1 to Prelim QFs, 1st 4 div 2 to Double Chance (SF 4 in div 1 next year); and Tier 3 KO, 2nd 4 div 3 v 2nd 4 div 2 in Prelim QFs, 4 Prelim winners v 1st 4 div 3 in QFs (4 QF winners in div 2 next year). Prov Championships played separately and early, if they have to be retained."
Me head is reeling.....

Seanfanbocht (Roscommon) - Posts: 1402 - 15/07/2023 19:12:45    2494576

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A conundrum for the GAA after this year is to create a rest weekend after the league finals, before the provincial championships start. Counties are unlikely to want to play more than 3 weeks in a row during the league. The provincial championships are likely to run over 6 weekends as they did this year. Retaining league finals and allowing a rest weekend after the league finals is an impossible task within the current intercounty timeframe.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7822 - 22/07/2023 09:29:14    2496077

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Replying To legendzxix:  "A conundrum for the GAA after this year is to create a rest weekend after the league finals, before the provincial championships start. Counties are unlikely to want to play more than 3 weeks in a row during the league. The provincial championships are likely to run over 6 weekends as they did this year. Retaining league finals and allowing a rest weekend after the league finals is an impossible task within the current intercounty timeframe."
Get rid of League Finals. Team that tops a League Division wins it.
Also play Provincial Prelims and Qtr Finals during the League to shorten the breaks between Provincial elimination and first Group games in Sam/TC.

Seanfanbocht (Roscommon) - Posts: 1402 - 22/07/2023 11:47:21    2496109

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Replying To legendzxix:  "A conundrum for the GAA after this year is to create a rest weekend after the league finals, before the provincial championships start. Counties are unlikely to want to play more than 3 weeks in a row during the league. The provincial championships are likely to run over 6 weekends as they did this year. Retaining league finals and allowing a rest weekend after the league finals is an impossible task within the current intercounty timeframe."
Yes, it's time for League Finals to go. Also, the two group phases (league 7, round robin 3) could be combined and shortened to 8 matches. Say, amend the league divisions to 9-9-9-5, with a double round robin in the last division and have a mixed-quality two-group division 1.

Sam Tier 1 KO - 10 teams, from top 5 in groups 1A & 1B, with any missing Provincial Champs added. If still 10 teams, crossover 4th v 5th in Prelim QF Rd before QFs (1st v Prelim winners and crossover 2nd v 3rd).

Paudi O Se Tier 2 KO - 13 teams, from top 5 in div 2 and all bottom 8 in div 1; div 2 winner & two 6ths in div 1 to QFs, other 10 to Prelim QF Rd (7thv5th, 7thv4th, 8thv3rd, 8thv2nd, 9thv9th); QF 8 go up/or stay in div 1.

Tailteann Tier 3 KO - 6 teams, from top 2 in div 3 and all bottom 4 in div 2; div 3 winner & 6th in div 2 to SFs, other 4 to QFs (7thv2nd, 8thv9th); SF 4 go up/or stay in div 2.

Separately, lengthen inter-county season by three weeks into August (Finals on the 1st & 2nd Sunday AFTER the holiday Monday).

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2570 - 22/07/2023 18:09:04    2496165

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I think the two tiers is the way to go in regards the Championship. Anymore than that and it takes away from the competition. A few changes I would make are scrapping the League finals, scrapping the Prelim quarter finals and only the winner of the province qualifies for Sam. The Talteann was competitive this year and I do think it has a good deal of buy in. It was a pity though that a team like Antrim didn't win it as it always felt to me that Meath and Down saw themselves as above it even though they had buy in. I would maybe keep the Prelim Quarters for this competition.

The Sam Maguire was quite good although definitely needs a few tweaks. Prelim quarters have to go got sure. I also detest the July final. I know it is here to stay now but there was something romantic about a September date especially for school kids with massive build ups and county days for the finalists at school etc..it just feels that romance has been lost a bit

Jazzyjeff (Derry) - Posts: 152 - 22/07/2023 19:52:11    2496175

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I would prefer the sting be taken out of the league in order to allow the championship time to breath.

Move preseason competition to December - ban participation of any club players who won a county title

Start league mid January

12 team div 1, - 2 groups of 6 (open draw every year)
14 team div 2 - 2 groups of 7 (open draw every year)
6 team div 3

All teams get five standard league games and either a play off game or relegation playoff

Each div has quarters, semis and finals to decide the winner - finals on Easter weekend

Provincial championship draws are held at end of scheduled matches (pre play offs) and are seeded based on league placings
Finals on June Bank holiday weekend

Tailteann cup starts weekend before June bank holiday

Sam McGuire Cup has 4 groups of 4 - starts mid june

Group 1 - provincial winners
Group 2 - provincial finalists
Group 3 - provincial semi finalists
Group 4 - provincial quarter finalists and prelim round losers

Sam McGuire round robin finishes mid July (as per tealtean cup final)


Top 3 in group 1 and Top 1 in group 2 go to Q finals

Bottom of group 1, 2&3 from group 2, 1&2 from group 3, 1&2 from group 2 and tailteann cup winners go to prelim q finals - played August Bank holiday

All Ireland final played 1st Sunday in September

Provincial Club championship is seeded based on counties senior team finishing date in tailteann cup/Sam McGuire

Eg - Club champions from Dublin/Kerry etc wouldn't have to play in provincial club championship until semi final stage of they reach the Sam McGuire final

So the all Ireland winner can play it's club championship in September and October and its county can play the provincial club semi finals in mid November, provincial club finals at end of November, with all Ireland club finals on new years day

With the league having a less pressurised nature, the club players who don't get rested up in November and December can take January and February off before the league playoffs get going in March

With Jan and February allowing a county trial players, they can also leave sigerson players alone for January and February

Id move the U20 competition to August, September and October also, so it's not clashing with Sigerson and senior league matches

tirawleybaron (Mayo) - Posts: 1105 - 22/07/2023 21:05:53    2496187

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Replying To tirawleybaron:  "I would prefer the sting be taken out of the league in order to allow the championship time to breath.

Move preseason competition to December - ban participation of any club players who won a county title

Start league mid January

12 team div 1, - 2 groups of 6 (open draw every year)
14 team div 2 - 2 groups of 7 (open draw every year)
6 team div 3

All teams get five standard league games and either a play off game or relegation playoff

Each div has quarters, semis and finals to decide the winner - finals on Easter weekend

Provincial championship draws are held at end of scheduled matches (pre play offs) and are seeded based on league placings
Finals on June Bank holiday weekend

Tailteann cup starts weekend before June bank holiday

Sam McGuire Cup has 4 groups of 4 - starts mid june

Group 1 - provincial winners
Group 2 - provincial finalists
Group 3 - provincial semi finalists
Group 4 - provincial quarter finalists and prelim round losers

Sam McGuire round robin finishes mid July (as per tealtean cup final)


Top 3 in group 1 and Top 1 in group 2 go to Q finals

Bottom of group 1, 2&3 from group 2, 1&2 from group 3, 1&2 from group 2 and tailteann cup winners go to prelim q finals - played August Bank holiday

All Ireland final played 1st Sunday in September

Provincial Club championship is seeded based on counties senior team finishing date in tailteann cup/Sam McGuire

Eg - Club champions from Dublin/Kerry etc wouldn't have to play in provincial club championship until semi final stage of they reach the Sam McGuire final

So the all Ireland winner can play it's club championship in September and October and its county can play the provincial club semi finals in mid November, provincial club finals at end of November, with all Ireland club finals on new years day

With the league having a less pressurised nature, the club players who don't get rested up in November and December can take January and February off before the league playoffs get going in March

With Jan and February allowing a county trial players, they can also leave sigerson players alone for January and February

Id move the U20 competition to August, September and October also, so it's not clashing with Sigerson and senior league matches"
why not remove pre season competitions altogether.

why is there such an obsession to play the league to a conclusion before the championship even starts.
with your proposal players from some countys would never get a break or only get a very small break. that needs to change.
you need to introduce far more of an off season for all players

KillingFields (Limerick) - Posts: 3496 - 22/07/2023 21:38:15    2496191

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Replying To Jazzyjeff:  "I think the two tiers is the way to go in regards the Championship. Anymore than that and it takes away from the competition. A few changes I would make are scrapping the League finals, scrapping the Prelim quarter finals and only the winner of the province qualifies for Sam. The Talteann was competitive this year and I do think it has a good deal of buy in. It was a pity though that a team like Antrim didn't win it as it always felt to me that Meath and Down saw themselves as above it even though they had buy in. I would maybe keep the Prelim Quarters for this competition.

The Sam Maguire was quite good although definitely needs a few tweaks. Prelim quarters have to go got sure. I also detest the July final. I know it is here to stay now but there was something romantic about a September date especially for school kids with massive build ups and county days for the finalists at school etc..it just feels that romance has been lost a bit"
Not sure July Finals are here to stay - I could see a tweak with August Finals coming down the track.

I like the "Pat Spillane Split Season" idea - a 39 week playing season, with one half having inter-county hurling/club football and the other half playing inter-county football/club hurling.

A few issues arise from that -
1) a dual inter-county player would never return to his club (perhaps asking players to concentrate on one code is just a small price to pay by a small group of players to make this change work).

2) each inter-county season is limited to a short 19 or 20 weeks (perhaps each "split half" could be extended to 6 months, with a 1.5 months overlap in the middle).

During the overlap, a limited number of counties would be concluding the first half, so their players would not be able to return to their "same code" clubs or "other code" inter-county teams for "a few weeks". All things considered, perhaps it would be worth implementing an extended Spillane split season.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2570 - 22/07/2023 21:48:38    2496193

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There are arguments for and against retaining the preliminary quarter-finals. I'll try and sidestep for now. If the counties do decide to drop the preliminary quarter-finals, the Round 1 winners in the group should play in Round 2. It guarantees that two teams cannot be qualified from the group after Round 2. It would mean holding off on the Round 2 and 3 fixtures until after Round 1.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7822 - 23/07/2023 08:37:49    2496210

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Replying To legendzxix:  "There are arguments for and against retaining the preliminary quarter-finals. I'll try and sidestep for now. If the counties do decide to drop the preliminary quarter-finals, the Round 1 winners in the group should play in Round 2. It guarantees that two teams cannot be qualified from the group after Round 2. It would mean holding off on the Round 2 and 3 fixtures until after Round 1."
In that scenario have a 2 week gap between Rd 1 and 2, then play 2 and 3 successive weekends.

Seanfanbocht (Roscommon) - Posts: 1402 - 23/07/2023 10:24:55    2496223

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Replying To Seanfanbocht:  "In that scenario have a 2 week gap between Rd 1 and 2, then play 2 and 3 successive weekends."
I take your point but is a two week gap necessary? The preliminary quarter-finals were arranged within a week. What you'd want for maximising the schedule is:
Group Round 1
Group Round 2
Weekend off
Group Round 3
Quarter-finals
Weekend off
Semi-finals
Weekend off
All-Ireland final.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7822 - 23/07/2023 13:41:08    2496242

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Replying To KillingFields:  "why not remove pre season competitions altogether.

why is there such an obsession to play the league to a conclusion before the championship even starts.
with your proposal players from some countys would never get a break or only get a very small break. that needs to change.
you need to introduce far more of an off season for all players"
If you remove the pre season games they will be replaced by challenge matches.

I think part of the problem with the GAA calender is the desire to punish the majority to allow for the minority.

A club championship (senior/intermediate/junior A) should have no more than 16 clubs with a 4x4 round robin
So thats 3 games for 4 teams, 4 for 8 teams, 5 for 4 teams and 6 for two teams.
So 75% of players have 4 matches or less

Out of 3996 adult teams in th country only 192 (5%) qualify for a provincial championship game at either senior, junior or Intermediate.

Only 960 mem make a senior intercounty panel which is about 1% of the whole adult male playing population.

If it was up to me, I'd just run all club competitions without county players and have the intercounty 1% be consolidated to 0.5% and play a semi professional league & championship from March to October

tirawleybaron (Mayo) - Posts: 1105 - 25/07/2023 20:05:09    2496929

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Replying To tirawleybaron:  "If you remove the pre season games they will be replaced by challenge matches.

I think part of the problem with the GAA calender is the desire to punish the majority to allow for the minority.

A club championship (senior/intermediate/junior A) should have no more than 16 clubs with a 4x4 round robin
So thats 3 games for 4 teams, 4 for 8 teams, 5 for 4 teams and 6 for two teams.
So 75% of players have 4 matches or less

Out of 3996 adult teams in th country only 192 (5%) qualify for a provincial championship game at either senior, junior or Intermediate.

Only 960 mem make a senior intercounty panel which is about 1% of the whole adult male playing population.

If it was up to me, I'd just run all club competitions without county players and have the intercounty 1% be consolidated to 0.5% and play a semi professional league & championship from March to October"
You make some valid points, but the last part I can't agree with. Running club championships in parallel with intercounty, and without county players available would significantly penalise smaller clubs who happen to have 1 or 2 very talented players.
Having Fossa for example, having to play club championship without the two Cliffords would be ridiculous. There are many other small clubs who rely heavily on their star player.
The bigger clubs with deeper panels could cope much more easily. It would actually be a detriment to the club to have a player playing county, which would be farcical.

WanPintWin (Galway) - Posts: 2036 - 26/07/2023 11:15:35    2497007

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Replying To WanPintWin:  "You make some valid points, but the last part I can't agree with. Running club championships in parallel with intercounty, and without county players available would significantly penalise smaller clubs who happen to have 1 or 2 very talented players.
Having Fossa for example, having to play club championship without the two Cliffords would be ridiculous. There are many other small clubs who rely heavily on their star player.
The bigger clubs with deeper panels could cope much more easily. It would actually be a detriment to the club to have a player playing county, which would be farcical."
Agreed.
County lads miss most of the Club League games but play for their Clubs in the Championship under the present system.
That's a decent compromise.

Seanfanbocht (Roscommon) - Posts: 1402 - 26/07/2023 11:30:13    2497014

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Replying To tirawleybaron:  "If you remove the pre season games they will be replaced by challenge matches.

I think part of the problem with the GAA calender is the desire to punish the majority to allow for the minority.

A club championship (senior/intermediate/junior A) should have no more than 16 clubs with a 4x4 round robin
So thats 3 games for 4 teams, 4 for 8 teams, 5 for 4 teams and 6 for two teams.
So 75% of players have 4 matches or less

Out of 3996 adult teams in th country only 192 (5%) qualify for a provincial championship game at either senior, junior or Intermediate.

Only 960 mem make a senior intercounty panel which is about 1% of the whole adult male playing population.

If it was up to me, I'd just run all club competitions without county players and have the intercounty 1% be consolidated to 0.5% and play a semi professional league & championship from March to October"
Teams are already playing friendlies on top of these pre season knock out cups or leagues. you dont need both. what oter sports have a knock out cup in pre season anyway?
i dont think any club championship should be limited to 16 and should follow that format. club players deserve far more games in their primary competition than 3-6 even if they have a league as well.
I do agree that club championships shouldnt be held up by inter county but disagree with running all club competitions without inter county players.
club championship games sbould run all through summer and on weekends of county games unless a club has 5/6/7 or more players in a county squad which would give reason for a club game be postponed

KillingFields (Limerick) - Posts: 3496 - 26/07/2023 11:36:15    2497019

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The only way for me is that county players are available to their clubs at all times less say 10 days before county games… There is a total disconnect between players at County and club level and that's not healthy for the game… County managers are practically running county boards at this stage and clubs never get the benefit of their best players as they are generally spun out by the time they are released back to their clubs… The County should be delighted when players are available to them instead of it been the other way around.. At the end of the day if a player looses form or gets injured he/she is dumped back to their club without a thought…. For me there is far too much emphasis on County and not near enough on the club…

ForeverBlue2 (Cavan) - Posts: 1899 - 26/07/2023 12:01:22    2497033

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Replying To tirawleybaron:  "If you remove the pre season games they will be replaced by challenge matches.

I think part of the problem with the GAA calender is the desire to punish the majority to allow for the minority.

A club championship (senior/intermediate/junior A) should have no more than 16 clubs with a 4x4 round robin
So thats 3 games for 4 teams, 4 for 8 teams, 5 for 4 teams and 6 for two teams.
So 75% of players have 4 matches or less

Out of 3996 adult teams in th country only 192 (5%) qualify for a provincial championship game at either senior, junior or Intermediate.

Only 960 mem make a senior intercounty panel which is about 1% of the whole adult male playing population.

If it was up to me, I'd just run all club competitions without county players and have the intercounty 1% be consolidated to 0.5% and play a semi professional league & championship from March to October"
teams already are playing pre season games anyway so why the nneed to play for a trophy especialy knock out competition in pre season. Kildare play more than the o byrne cup games before playing in the league, same with sligo and fbd league
a club championship shouldnt at all be limited to 16 and have to have a format of 4/4 then knock out.

KillingFields (Limerick) - Posts: 3496 - 26/07/2023 12:04:09    2497034

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