GAA Football

Tiers proposals 'hindering' task force says CPA

The Club Players' Association says Central Council's backing of a proposal for a tiered championship is hindering the work of the GAA's fixtures task force. Picture by Piaras Ó Midheach

THE Club Players’ Association has accused Central Council of “hindering” the work of the GAA fixtures taskforce by putting a proposal for a tiered championship in front of a Special Congress next month.

The 11-man task force was set up in June and given a brief of producing a report in November on issues affecting the GAA’s fixtures calendar, including the scheduling and structure of inter-county competitions and the time available for clubs.

The GAA announced earlier this year that it would bring the All-Ireland club finals forward into January from next year, and at the weekend Central Council decided to push ahead with a bid to split the All-Ireland SFC into two tiers.

“We are very concerned and disappointed that the GAA central management committee has decided to bring forward proposals for the Tier 2 competitions to Special Congress in October while the Fixtures Calendar Review Taskforce has not yet made its report, recommendations and options as directed when it was established in June,” said CPA chairman Micheál Briody.

“Since our earliest engagement with Croke Park we have argued against this sort of incremental change which has hampered real progress in improving the lot of all players.

“Now that we have in place a Fixtures Taskforce, surely we must give the people involved the respect to let them bring forward their considered recommendations within the agreed timeframe so our fixtures problem is addressed for all our players.

“The CPA has engaged fully with the Fixtures Taskforce since its formation contributing feedback and analysis, and making available all materials and proposals that we have developed to date.

“This has all been done in good faith in the assumption that the Taskforce would be allowed to complete its work unhindered as directed. That appears now not to be the case.

“While we are disappointed that Special Congress is going ahead, we will continue to work within the Fixtures Taskforce to try and find a workable solution for club players from 2021.”

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