National Forum

Football Format Changes Discussion

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"While the Tailteann Cup was designed to aid the weaker counties it adds between eight and nine weeks to the season putting smaller counties under more financial pressure. It costs about €15,000 a week to run the county team whereas they only receive €40,000 for playing in the competition."
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This is nearly a strong argument for a provincial tiered system like hurling.
Connacht and Munster with a group of 4 each, top 2 into provincial finals. Leinster and Ulster with 2 groups of 4 each, top 2 into provincial semi-finals.
Provincial winners direct to quarter-finals. Provincial runners-up into preliminary quarter-finals. 6 third placed teams into Qualifier Round 1. 4 provincial semi-final losers, 3 Qualifier Round 1 winners and New York into Qualifier Round 2. 4 Qualifier Round 2 winners into preliminary quarter-finals.
Tailteann Cup contested in 2 groups of 4. Winner, like the McDonagh Cup, promoted to their province in the following year. The Tailteann Cup can run in parallel with Leinster Championship, with the final on the same day. Just like the McDonagh in the hurling.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 30/03/2024 08:31:58    2534567

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Replying To Jazzyjeff:  "The format as it is is very confusing for a lot of people. I also think it is very unfair that Clare have to win one game to leave themselves guaranteed Sam Maguire football. That is grossly unfair on those who finished ahead of them in the League who both face two games to secure a place in the Championship- two games in a tougher provincial as well.

I also don't like the seedings nor the idea of trying to avoid repeat pairings. The third place into a preliminary round is also so convoluted although the intentions are good to prevent dead rubbers. There must be a simpler way of doing this.

Top 16 in the league qualify for Sam Maguire (Top 15 if Tailteann Cup winners are outside of that). Keep the league finals.

Provincial Championships- winners qualify automatically for Sam Maguire

No seedings in Championship. Open draw. Four groups of four. Top two teams go through to the last eight. That opens up the chance of a group of death and the possibility of some big hitters exiting. Then open draw in the knockout rounds. Anyone can draw anyone.

Tailteann Cup- same format. Open draw. 4 groups of 4. Top two go through. Open draw in knockouts. Winner qualifies for following years Sam."
I generally agree with mist if those comments. However, the top two of four, even if unseeded, could still have dead rubbers.

After three games per team (seeded or unseeded), I'd rather have the top 11 of a combined 16 to the KO - top 5 to QFs (might omit a group winner) and middle 6 to Prelim QFs. There be a better scramble for points to earn a bye or avoid elimination.

Better still, merge the league in as well - final table based on 10-12 games prior to AIC KO (top 2 could initially play a double chance league final before AIC KO).

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2664 - 30/03/2024 14:11:28    2534606

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Dessie Dolan joins the Football Format Changes Discussion:
• There was commentary during the week that the Division 3 champions should be given priority and I totally agree with that and it's not just because we won the Division 3 title.
• He pointed out that teams drawn on the weaker side of either the Connacht or Munster provincial championships have a better chance of playing in the Sam Maguire than the Division 3 champions.
• It is an anomaly and maybe it will be fixed because this is a three-year experiment. It would give great importance to Division 3.
Conor Laverty also joins the Football Format Changes Discussion:
• I think it is a wee bit unbalanced that a team maybe has to beat two Division 3 or 4 teams to get into the Sam Maguire where we had already beaten them in the league.
• Beating a team in the league and getting promoted and somebody below you getting into the Sam Maguire is a bit unbalanced.
Interesting comments from both. My own view of it is that the league ranks counties 1 to 32. The provincial draws should be on the Monday morning after the league finals, using league seeding for fair and balanced draws.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 31/03/2024 08:32:54    2534744

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Westies v Kildare - assuming Westmeath beat Wicklow - will be huge game as winners of that probably nailed on to be finalists which is one solution to Dessie's dilemma. Westmeath have been better team so far and I'd fancy them.

BarneyGrant (Dublin) - Posts: 2721 - 31/03/2024 10:21:05    2534759

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Replying To legendzxix:  "Dessie Dolan joins the Football Format Changes Discussion:
• There was commentary during the week that the Division 3 champions should be given priority and I totally agree with that and it's not just because we won the Division 3 title.
• He pointed out that teams drawn on the weaker side of either the Connacht or Munster provincial championships have a better chance of playing in the Sam Maguire than the Division 3 champions.
• It is an anomaly and maybe it will be fixed because this is a three-year experiment. It would give great importance to Division 3.
Conor Laverty also joins the Football Format Changes Discussion:
• I think it is a wee bit unbalanced that a team maybe has to beat two Division 3 or 4 teams to get into the Sam Maguire where we had already beaten them in the league.
• Beating a team in the league and getting promoted and somebody below you getting into the Sam Maguire is a bit unbalanced.
Interesting comments from both. My own view of it is that the league ranks counties 1 to 32. The provincial draws should be on the Monday morning after the league finals, using league seeding for fair and balanced draws."
While I support Sam auto entry for Div 3 Champ (Team 15), a lower unrelegated Div 2 team (Team 14, 13 etc) could miss out to make room.
This creates a new version of "Team 6 in Proposal B" - remember? - but while not perfect, I am in favour of Div 3 Champ inclusion.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2664 - 31/03/2024 15:05:05    2534799

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Replying To legendzxix:  "Dessie Dolan joins the Football Format Changes Discussion:
• There was commentary during the week that the Division 3 champions should be given priority and I totally agree with that and it's not just because we won the Division 3 title.
• He pointed out that teams drawn on the weaker side of either the Connacht or Munster provincial championships have a better chance of playing in the Sam Maguire than the Division 3 champions.
• It is an anomaly and maybe it will be fixed because this is a three-year experiment. It would give great importance to Division 3.
Conor Laverty also joins the Football Format Changes Discussion:
• I think it is a wee bit unbalanced that a team maybe has to beat two Division 3 or 4 teams to get into the Sam Maguire where we had already beaten them in the league.
• Beating a team in the league and getting promoted and somebody below you getting into the Sam Maguire is a bit unbalanced.
Interesting comments from both. My own view of it is that the league ranks counties 1 to 32. The provincial draws should be on the Monday morning after the league finals, using league seeding for fair and balanced draws."
I agree on seeded Monday draw - although many pairings would be as uninteresting as ever and Dublin/Kerry still having an easier route than others.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2664 - 31/03/2024 15:17:34    2534800

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Replying To legendzxix:  "Dessie Dolan joins the Football Format Changes Discussion:
• There was commentary during the week that the Division 3 champions should be given priority and I totally agree with that and it's not just because we won the Division 3 title.
• He pointed out that teams drawn on the weaker side of either the Connacht or Munster provincial championships have a better chance of playing in the Sam Maguire than the Division 3 champions.
• It is an anomaly and maybe it will be fixed because this is a three-year experiment. It would give great importance to Division 3.
Conor Laverty also joins the Football Format Changes Discussion:
• I think it is a wee bit unbalanced that a team maybe has to beat two Division 3 or 4 teams to get into the Sam Maguire where we had already beaten them in the league.
• Beating a team in the league and getting promoted and somebody below you getting into the Sam Maguire is a bit unbalanced.
Interesting comments from both. My own view of it is that the league ranks counties 1 to 32. The provincial draws should be on the Monday morning after the league finals, using league seeding for fair and balanced draws."
If you want to play in the Sam Maguire cup, you've no business in div3 of the NFL.

Pope_Benedict (Galway) - Posts: 3546 - 31/03/2024 15:45:07    2534804

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Replying To Pope_Benedict:  "If you want to play in the Sam Maguire cup, you've no business in div3 of the NFL."
Fair point too. I don't think Fermanagh, Kildare and anyone who missed out on promotion to Division 2 can be giving out too much. Down and Westmeath can focus on retaining their Division 2 status next year.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 31/03/2024 16:20:10    2534813

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Replying To Pope_Benedict:  "If you want to play in the Sam Maguire cup, you've no business in div3 of the NFL."
But if you think the Sam 16 should be the Strongest 16, it should include 15th- & 16-ranked Div 3 Finalists after promotion.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2664 - 01/04/2024 00:16:08    2534920

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Replying To Whammo86:  "From the Provincial championship thread:

Clare have missed out on promotion from Division 3. Clare will take on Tipperary or Waterford for a place in the Munster final. One of Clare, Tipperary or Waterford will qualify for the All-Ireland instead of a Division 3 finalist.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7752 - 24/03/2024 18:02:50 2533218

It really is a joke that we have a fair system for grading teams and then the unfair provincial system is overlaid on top of this such that our best guess is that Westmeath and Down are better than all of Tipp, Clare and Waterford but one of them will miss out on a place in the All Ireland because of results between the Munster contingent."
Your point is well made.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2664 - 01/04/2024 00:51:21    2534925

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Swap the provincials and league. Provincial champions plus Tailteann champions plus top 11 in the league. That may or may not include the Div 3 finalists. But at least Clare won't have to beat Tipp or Waterford to qualify. We had a similar situation with Sligo last year. Also only the top two should qualify to the knockouts. People complain about dead rubbers but football and rugby have no issue with this. Having the third team qualify takes the heat out of the groups and reduces the chance of a top team being knocked out. Pool A was a good example last year with Mayo finishing 3rd.

Rolo2010 (Donegal) - Posts: 739 - 01/04/2024 15:46:16    2535010

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It definitely needs fixing, you want the top 16 teams in the All Ireland series, the provincials are skewing the whole thing the wrong way, the only province that's really competitive is Ulster.

Tirchonaill1 (Donegal) - Posts: 2785 - 01/04/2024 17:21:40    2535030

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Replying To Rolo2010:  "Swap the provincials and league. Provincial champions plus Tailteann champions plus top 11 in the league. That may or may not include the Div 3 finalists. But at least Clare won't have to beat Tipp or Waterford to qualify. We had a similar situation with Sligo last year. Also only the top two should qualify to the knockouts. People complain about dead rubbers but football and rugby have no issue with this. Having the third team qualify takes the heat out of the groups and reduces the chance of a top team being knocked out. Pool A was a good example last year with Mayo finishing 3rd."
There is a lot to be said for provincial winners only, Tailteann winner and 11 league qualifiers. One sticky point is finances. The Tailteann Cup wouldn't be able to start until after the provincial finals however. The longer counties are waiting from provincial knockout to Tailteann group stage, there is a cost to keep the county teams on the road. County boards will be looking at the cost involved before voting one way or the other.
John Prenty was saying if provincial championships were brought forward in the calendar, they'd have to receive funding from other GAA sources.
In the current format, if league finals were scrapped, a third Tier Championship might have to be created to give Division 4 counties a realistic chance of getting to Croke Park and winning silverware.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 01/04/2024 18:56:35    2535050

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Replying To Pope_Benedict:  "If you want to play in the Sam Maguire cup, you've no business in div3 of the NFL."
100 per cent.

TheFlaker (Mayo) - Posts: 7913 - 01/04/2024 20:29:41    2535062

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League Championship with Provincial Championship results doubling up into the former.

Three-tier league 12-10-10.
12-game regular season, including own-tier round robin with any Prov ties doubling up, plus one to three extra games, that could include inter-tier Prov or non-Prov ties or additional intra-tier ties.

Tier 1 - top 7 of 12 to 'Sam AIC KO' after top 2 initially plays a 'double chance' league final. League Champ to AI SFs, other six to AI QFs.

Tier 2 - top 5 of 10 (plus tier 1 bottom 5) to 'P Ó Sé Cup AIC KO' after top 2 initially plays a 'double chance' league final.
League Champ & tier 1 bottom 5 to Ó Sé QFs, other four to Prelim QFs.

Tier 3 - top 5 of 10 (plus tier 2 bottom 5) to 'Tailteann Cup AIC KO' after top 2 initially plays a 'double chance' league final. League Champ & tier 2 bottom 5 to Tailteann QFs, other four to Prelim QFs.

Ó Sé & Tailteann Cup SF 4 and highest ranked QF loser from the higher tier, go or stay up.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2664 - 02/04/2024 02:28:27    2535100

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Replying To Tirchonaill1:  "It definitely needs fixing, you want the top 16 teams in the All Ireland series, the provincials are skewing the whole thing the wrong way, the only province that's really competitive is Ulster."
And now the provincial councils want the prov champions ti qualify automatically for the QFs. There would be no point in Dublin bothering with the group stage in that case.

Rolo2010 (Donegal) - Posts: 739 - 02/04/2024 10:45:09    2535134

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Replying To Rolo2010:  "And now the provincial councils want the prov champions ti qualify automatically for the QFs. There would be no point in Dublin bothering with the group stage in that case."
When Connacht champions Galway lost to Tipperary in the 2016 All-Ireland quarter-finals, the group stage that came in was supposed to be for the benefit of Provincial champions as well that they weren't knocked out after one loss.

legendzxix (Kerry) - Posts: 7943 - 02/04/2024 17:57:35    2535239

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Not exactly sure why everyone is talking about the All Ireland series when the issue is that the provincial championships are not seeded. The provinces need to get their act together first and then see if it all works better.

zinny (Wexford) - Posts: 1808 - 03/04/2024 02:02:42    2535306

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Replying To omahant:  "While I support Sam auto entry for Div 3 Champ (Team 15), a lower unrelegated Div 2 team (Team 14, 13 etc) could miss out to make room.
This creates a new version of "Team 6 in Proposal B" - remember? - but while not perfect, I am in favour of Div 3 Champ inclusion."
Only seven teams are guaranteed entry to the Sam Maguire via the league, teams 1 to 6 in Division 1 and the Division 2 champions. Automatically giving the Division 3 champions (Team 15 in the league ranking) a place would mean that, in the most extreme case, potentially seven teams would be disdvantaged. It does not make sense and is totally unfair as a proposal. It also could incentivise a team to get themselves relegated from Division 2, for example, the likes of Kildare who have a strong chance of winning Division 3 next year.

CeachtPeile (Cavan) - Posts: 104 - 03/04/2024 14:43:23    2535382

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Replying To zinny:  "Not exactly sure why everyone is talking about the All Ireland series when the issue is that the provincial championships are not seeded. The provinces need to get their act together first and then see if it all works better."
No they dont. The provincial councils shouldnt have to all play to same rules about seeding.

KillingFields (Limerick) - Posts: 3532 - 03/04/2024 15:17:26    2535391

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