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Football Format Changes Discussion

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Replying To Greengrass:  "The GAA is the biggest sporting organisation in the country. It pulls by far the biggest crowds in the country as far as team sports are concerned. I'm not sure where you're going with the GAA needing to change how it sells itself."
Because it needs to change how it sells itself. Far too many people even diehards dismiss the league as 'only the league' and its all about championship and that isnt good enough with more abd more interest and competition from other sports
Of couese it jeeds to change that kind of attitude especially as mozt counties play far more games in january+february than they will in rest of year which is totally messed up

KillingFields (Limerick) - Posts: 3532 - 07/03/2024 21:12:44    2530232

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Was the Tailteann Cup designed for the likes of Meath and Kildare?
When the Tommy Murphy Cup was for 8 Division 4 counties, Division 4 counties felt excluded. Is the 16:16 split a bit of a sharp boundary? Might 20:12 be a fairer split?
It's more acceptable in groups of 5 for 2nd v 3rd to be a preliminary quarter-final. All teams would get 2 home games.
Week 1: 5v1 2v3
Week 2: 1v4 2v5
Week 3: 4v2 5v3
Week 4: 4v5 3v1
Week 5: 1v2 3v4
Groups of 5 can be played over 5 consecutive weekends. Provincial winners, Seed 1, can have a rest week on Week 3. Seed 5 with disadvantage of not playing in week 5. Seed 4 also faced with 4 weekends in a row.
The provincial championships would have to be completed within 4 weekends. Allow a weekend off after league finals and provincial finals.
CURRENT CALENDAR
0. League finals.
1. Provincial Football
2. Provincial Football
3. Provincial Football
4. Provincial Football
5. Munster and Connacht finals
6. Leinster and Ulster finals
7. Munster and Connacht finalists in All-Ireland R1
8. Leinster and Ulster finalists in All-Ireland R1
9. All-Ireland Round 2
10. Weekend Off
11. All-Ireland Round 3
12. All-Ireland Preliminary quarter-finals.
ALTERNATIVE CALENDAR FOR GROUPS OF 5:
0. League finals.
1. Weekend off
2. Provincial R1
3. Leinster and Ulster QF. Connacht and Munster SF.
4. Leinster and Ulster SF.
5. All Provincial finals.
6. Weekend off
7. All-Ireland Round 1
8. All-Ireland Round 2
9. All-Ireland Round 3
10. All-Ireland Round 4
11. All-Ireland Round 5
12. All-Ireland Preliminary quarter-finals.
The Tailteann can be played in 2 groups of 6.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 07/03/2024 21:36:25    2530236

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Replying To KillingFields:  "Because it needs to change how it sells itself. Far too many people even diehards dismiss the league as 'only the league' and its all about championship and that isnt good enough with more abd more interest and competition from other sports
Of couese it jeeds to change that kind of attitude especially as mozt counties play far more games in january+february than they will in rest of year which is totally messed up"
And yet you argue against me when i say merge the league and championship for one longer season where everything matters.

You are never going to have 2 important competitions in one season. It just doesn't happen. Same in rugby. People enjoy the United Championship week to week. That's a rebranding exercise at the minute also but the Champions Cup is the only one that really matters.

TheFlaker (Mayo) - Posts: 7913 - 07/03/2024 22:30:59    2530240

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Replying To KillingFields:  "Because it needs to change how it sells itself. Far too many people even diehards dismiss the league as 'only the league' and its all about championship and that isnt good enough with more abd more interest and competition from other sports
Of couese it jeeds to change that kind of attitude especially as mozt counties play far more games in january+february than they will in rest of year which is totally messed up"
That's the point, it's ridiculous that we are shoe Horning the championship into a couple of months. Everything over by July is arrant nonsense. This year it's going to clash with euros. Two years time WC. This is FAI levels of idiocy.

Overthebar53 (Carlow) - Posts: 215 - 08/03/2024 00:15:23    2530245

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Replying To legendzxix:  "Was the Tailteann Cup designed for the likes of Meath and Kildare?
When the Tommy Murphy Cup was for 8 Division 4 counties, Division 4 counties felt excluded. Is the 16:16 split a bit of a sharp boundary? Might 20:12 be a fairer split?
It's more acceptable in groups of 5 for 2nd v 3rd to be a preliminary quarter-final. All teams would get 2 home games.
Week 1: 5v1 2v3
Week 2: 1v4 2v5
Week 3: 4v2 5v3
Week 4: 4v5 3v1
Week 5: 1v2 3v4
Groups of 5 can be played over 5 consecutive weekends. Provincial winners, Seed 1, can have a rest week on Week 3. Seed 5 with disadvantage of not playing in week 5. Seed 4 also faced with 4 weekends in a row.
The provincial championships would have to be completed within 4 weekends. Allow a weekend off after league finals and provincial finals.
CURRENT CALENDAR
0. League finals.
1. Provincial Football
2. Provincial Football
3. Provincial Football
4. Provincial Football
5. Munster and Connacht finals
6. Leinster and Ulster finals
7. Munster and Connacht finalists in All-Ireland R1
8. Leinster and Ulster finalists in All-Ireland R1
9. All-Ireland Round 2
10. Weekend Off
11. All-Ireland Round 3
12. All-Ireland Preliminary quarter-finals.
ALTERNATIVE CALENDAR FOR GROUPS OF 5:
0. League finals.
1. Weekend off
2. Provincial R1
3. Leinster and Ulster QF. Connacht and Munster SF.
4. Leinster and Ulster SF.
5. All Provincial finals.
6. Weekend off
7. All-Ireland Round 1
8. All-Ireland Round 2
9. All-Ireland Round 3
10. All-Ireland Round 4
11. All-Ireland Round 5
12. All-Ireland Preliminary quarter-finals.
The Tailteann can be played in 2 groups of 6."
20:12 v 16:16 - split the difference, 3rd 8 KO qualifier, 4 up/ 4 down?
5-team groups - Munster SHC is great with 3 advancing, 60% of 5 seems to be the sweet spot.

Where I deviate - I would want to 'somehow' incorporate Prov results to give those games more value - so all play 4 group + 3 'mixed quality' crossover games - with 12 of 20 to Tier 1 KO (4 byes).
Option - Somewhat like McCarthy SHC, instead, 1v2 Prelim 'double chance', with winner to QFs & loser to Prelim QFs (v 3rds).
Tier 2/ Tailteann 12 - yes, 2 groups of 6, 2x top 3 to KO, group winners get byes.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2664 - 08/03/2024 01:38:06    2530249

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Replying To legendzxix:  "Was the Tailteann Cup designed for the likes of Meath and Kildare?
When the Tommy Murphy Cup was for 8 Division 4 counties, Division 4 counties felt excluded. Is the 16:16 split a bit of a sharp boundary? Might 20:12 be a fairer split?
It's more acceptable in groups of 5 for 2nd v 3rd to be a preliminary quarter-final. All teams would get 2 home games.
Week 1: 5v1 2v3
Week 2: 1v4 2v5
Week 3: 4v2 5v3
Week 4: 4v5 3v1
Week 5: 1v2 3v4
Groups of 5 can be played over 5 consecutive weekends. Provincial winners, Seed 1, can have a rest week on Week 3. Seed 5 with disadvantage of not playing in week 5. Seed 4 also faced with 4 weekends in a row.
The provincial championships would have to be completed within 4 weekends. Allow a weekend off after league finals and provincial finals.
CURRENT CALENDAR
0. League finals.
1. Provincial Football
2. Provincial Football
3. Provincial Football
4. Provincial Football
5. Munster and Connacht finals
6. Leinster and Ulster finals
7. Munster and Connacht finalists in All-Ireland R1
8. Leinster and Ulster finalists in All-Ireland R1
9. All-Ireland Round 2
10. Weekend Off
11. All-Ireland Round 3
12. All-Ireland Preliminary quarter-finals.
ALTERNATIVE CALENDAR FOR GROUPS OF 5:
0. League finals.
1. Weekend off
2. Provincial R1
3. Leinster and Ulster QF. Connacht and Munster SF.
4. Leinster and Ulster SF.
5. All Provincial finals.
6. Weekend off
7. All-Ireland Round 1
8. All-Ireland Round 2
9. All-Ireland Round 3
10. All-Ireland Round 4
11. All-Ireland Round 5
12. All-Ireland Preliminary quarter-finals.
The Tailteann can be played in 2 groups of 6."
I really dislike how the field gets split up into 4. It's an issue with a Provincial based system, it's an issue with the current system. The top teams are kept apart for too long and don't play each other in enough impactful games every season.

You get rid of the league, you change the format to 2 groups of 10 it could be a more interesting format.

Whammo86 (Antrim) - Posts: 4256 - 08/03/2024 06:45:51    2530253

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Replying To TheFlaker:  "And yet you argue against me when i say merge the league and championship for one longer season where everything matters.

You are never going to have 2 important competitions in one season. It just doesn't happen. Same in rugby. People enjoy the United Championship week to week. That's a rebranding exercise at the minute also but the Champions Cup is the only one that really matters."
Yeah I'd agree with you on this. There is an issue with the league not being taken seriously but that's not going to be solved by playing it in parallel with the championship which will always take precedence.

The league needs to be the championship.

Whammo86 (Antrim) - Posts: 4256 - 08/03/2024 06:47:35    2530254

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Replying To Whammo86:  "I really dislike how the field gets split up into 4. It's an issue with a Provincial based system, it's an issue with the current system. The top teams are kept apart for too long and don't play each other in enough impactful games every season.

You get rid of the league, you change the format to 2 groups of 10 it could be a more interesting format."
The current hurling league format of 2 groups of 6 would suit a hurling championship. The previous football league format of 2 groups of 8 could suit the football championship.
With the championship gaining 5 group games, the league would have to lose 5 league games or else start in early January.
An option for the league in that scenario is for each teams to play 4 teams, 2 home and 2 away. After 4 rounds, the top 4 would go into league semi-finals and the bottom 4 into relegation finals. The league should be completed in February, the provincial championships in March. April to July then for 2 groups of 8 in both the All-Ireland and Tailteann, with knockout.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 08/03/2024 17:29:10    2530356

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Replying To legendzxix:  "The current hurling league format of 2 groups of 6 would suit a hurling championship. The previous football league format of 2 groups of 8 could suit the football championship.
With the championship gaining 5 group games, the league would have to lose 5 league games or else start in early January.
An option for the league in that scenario is for each teams to play 4 teams, 2 home and 2 away. After 4 rounds, the top 4 would go into league semi-finals and the bottom 4 into relegation finals. The league should be completed in February, the provincial championships in March. April to July then for 2 groups of 8 in both the All-Ireland and Tailteann, with knockout."
Yeah something along these lines if you even need a league at all.

The Provincials could be double elimination in Ulster and Leinster instead. 2 groups of 3 going to semifinals in the other 2.

Whammo86 (Antrim) - Posts: 4256 - 08/03/2024 19:01:55    2530364

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Replying To Whammo86:  "Yeah something along these lines if you even need a league at all.

The Provincials could be double elimination in Ulster and Leinster instead. 2 groups of 3 going to semifinals in the other 2."
Getting rid of the league would be drastic. The GAA like to make a step change. Provincial hurling championships becoming round robin. Quarter-finals in football become a group stage of 2 groups of 4. The current All-Ireland group stage double that in 4 groups of 4, with the Tailteann having a similar format.
Taking your 12:10:10 split, the league can remain in divisions of 8 with only 4 rounds. With semi-finals and final, the league will require 6 rounds in total.
The provincial championships could remain, though debatable but the majority in Congress retaining them.
The All-Ireland then in 2 groups of 6. Tailteann in 2 groups of 5 and a Tier 3 in 2 groups of 5.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 09/03/2024 09:49:20    2530417

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Replying To legendzxix:  "Getting rid of the league would be drastic. The GAA like to make a step change. Provincial hurling championships becoming round robin. Quarter-finals in football become a group stage of 2 groups of 4. The current All-Ireland group stage double that in 4 groups of 4, with the Tailteann having a similar format.
Taking your 12:10:10 split, the league can remain in divisions of 8 with only 4 rounds. With semi-finals and final, the league will require 6 rounds in total.
The provincial championships could remain, though debatable but the majority in Congress retaining them.
The All-Ireland then in 2 groups of 6. Tailteann in 2 groups of 5 and a Tier 3 in 2 groups of 5."
Divs of 8 with 4 games could have: Seeds 1,4,5,8 v 2,3,6,7.

While I like 12:10:10, I'd have full 11- or 9-game round robins combining League & AIC. In addition, I'd prefer to 'double up' ALL Provincial Championship matches into the round-robin, including those out of division. Perhaps, all Div 1 and Divs 2&3 teams could play 1or 3 'out of division' matches, respectively (all teams with a 12-match schedule).

Top half of each div to 'own tier' (1,2 or 3) KO AIC, with each bottom half to KO AIC of the tier below (so, each KO AIC tier will have 6, 11 & 10 teams - bottom 5 in Div 3 are out).

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2664 - 10/03/2024 18:20:07    2530618

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Replying To omahant:  "Divs of 8 with 4 games could have: Seeds 1,4,5,8 v 2,3,6,7.

While I like 12:10:10, I'd have full 11- or 9-game round robins combining League & AIC. In addition, I'd prefer to 'double up' ALL Provincial Championship matches into the round-robin, including those out of division. Perhaps, all Div 1 and Divs 2&3 teams could play 1or 3 'out of division' matches, respectively (all teams with a 12-match schedule).

Top half of each div to 'own tier' (1,2 or 3) KO AIC, with each bottom half to KO AIC of the tier below (so, each KO AIC tier will have 6, 11 & 10 teams - bottom 5 in Div 3 are out)."
The current conundrum the GAA want to solve is a weekend off after the league finals. How would you arrange that within the current format and timescale?

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 10/03/2024 19:43:18    2530643

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Replying To legendzxix:  "The current conundrum the GAA want to solve is a weekend off after the league finals. How would you arrange that within the current format and timescale?"
Have no League Finals.
Team that tops the Division gets the Cup.

Seanfanbocht (Roscommon) - Posts: 1496 - 10/03/2024 20:35:30    2530655

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Replying To Seanfanbocht:  "Have no League Finals.
Team that tops the Division gets the Cup."
Could go that way alright. 8 teams then miss out on a game in Croke Park though. The Division 1 and 2 finals have had good crowds in recent years. The provincial championships could be completed over 5 weekends. This would allow for a rest weekend after the league finals.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 10/03/2024 21:23:05    2530670

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Replying To legendzxix:  "The current conundrum the GAA want to solve is a weekend off after the league finals. How would you arrange that within the current format and timescale?"
6-team league divs, with finals; or
7 teams without.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2664 - 11/03/2024 03:22:37    2530685

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Replying To legendzxix:  "Getting rid of the league would be drastic. The GAA like to make a step change. Provincial hurling championships becoming round robin. Quarter-finals in football become a group stage of 2 groups of 4. The current All-Ireland group stage double that in 4 groups of 4, with the Tailteann having a similar format.
Taking your 12:10:10 split, the league can remain in divisions of 8 with only 4 rounds. With semi-finals and final, the league will require 6 rounds in total.
The provincial championships could remain, though debatable but the majority in Congress retaining them.
The All-Ireland then in 2 groups of 6. Tailteann in 2 groups of 5 and a Tier 3 in 2 groups of 5."
I'd not frame it as getting rid of the league. I'd frame it as the league being modified and becoming the championship.

Whammo86 (Antrim) - Posts: 4256 - 11/03/2024 13:08:34    2530741

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Replying To omahant:  "6-team league divs, with finals; or
7 teams without."
... but within the current format if that was your brief from GAA HQ?

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 11/03/2024 20:00:48    2530813

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Replying To Whammo86:  "I'd not frame it as getting rid of the league. I'd frame it as the league being modified and becoming the championship."
Currently all counties have 7 games before championship. A higher division gives more competitive games before championship. The league is balanced to be fair.
The provincial championships are a bit random. The league would actually help provincial championships if they used it for seeding. The current system of some provinces having lopsided draws, offering some counties an easy route to qualify as a provincial runner-up is flawed. The GAA have another conundrum in trying to offer meaningful reward for winning the provincial championship.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 11/03/2024 20:59:20    2530819

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Replying To legendzxix:  "Currently all counties have 7 games before championship. A higher division gives more competitive games before championship. The league is balanced to be fair.
The provincial championships are a bit random. The league would actually help provincial championships if they used it for seeding. The current system of some provinces having lopsided draws, offering some counties an easy route to qualify as a provincial runner-up is flawed. The GAA have another conundrum in trying to offer meaningful reward for winning the provincial championship."
7 games are too many for the warm up competition.

In terms of what to do about the provincials. I'm not sure.

The current situation where they are dumped into the season and not given a good amount of time to be played off is a problem and it actually can only be solved by trimming out some of the games. Fewer games overall but make the remaining games impactful.

A few years ago people were talking about flipping the season and I'd think that'd be worth exploring.

So you'd have a secondary competition that would look like the qualifier championship. Teams would play in their provincial championship with winners joining 4 qualifiers in an All Ireland cup quarterfinal.

The reward for winning your province is more competitive games much like how league promotion delivers that. I think you could play this off in 11 weeks.

The Championship is 2 groups of 8 with top 3 in each moving on to 6 team play offs.

This would take 15 weeks and you'd have a 2 week break between the All Ireland cup final and start of championship.

Whammo86 (Antrim) - Posts: 4256 - 12/03/2024 13:36:23    2530903

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Replying To Whammo86:  "7 games are too many for the warm up competition.

In terms of what to do about the provincials. I'm not sure.

The current situation where they are dumped into the season and not given a good amount of time to be played off is a problem and it actually can only be solved by trimming out some of the games. Fewer games overall but make the remaining games impactful.

A few years ago people were talking about flipping the season and I'd think that'd be worth exploring.

So you'd have a secondary competition that would look like the qualifier championship. Teams would play in their provincial championship with winners joining 4 qualifiers in an All Ireland cup quarterfinal.

The reward for winning your province is more competitive games much like how league promotion delivers that. I think you could play this off in 11 weeks.

The Championship is 2 groups of 8 with top 3 in each moving on to 6 team play offs.

This would take 15 weeks and you'd have a 2 week break between the All Ireland cup final and start of championship."
I don't disagree about 7 games being a lot. Reducing league games should be offset by increasing championship group games in any restructure. Hurling is going for divisions of 7. They could have gone for divisions of 6 on metric with two up and down but that wasn't a runner for whatever reason.
There is for and against retaining league finals. Division 1 and 2 finals have gotten good crowds. Eight counties are getting a day out in Croke Park. Tailteann semi-finals are in Croke Park so that can offset the removal of league finals.
If the league was pure league with no finals and used for seeding the provincial championships, there would be good continuity of 7 league games and then provincial knockout.
The league format is popular with players. If it was used as seeding for provincial championships, would they be against that?

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 12/03/2024 17:03:38    2530932

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