Brian Fenton of Dublin about to claim a mark during the 2020 GAA Football All-Ireland Senior Championship Final match between Dublin and Mayo at Croke Park in Dublin. 
Brian Fenton of Dublin about to claim a mark during the 2020 GAA Football All-Ireland Senior Championship Final match between Dublin and Mayo at Croke Park in Dublin. 

Alternative football championship structures off the clár at Annual Congress


By John Harrington

Proposals for alternative All-Ireland Football Championship structures will not be debated and voted on at GAA Annual Congress on February 27.

Instead, a Special Congress will be convened later this year to debate them as well as potential playing rule changed proposed by the Standing Committee on Playing Rules.

According to GAA Ard Stiúrthóir, Tom Ryan, these issues are too important to be debated and voted on in a virtual setting, which is the format Annual Congress will take on February 27.

“Some 47 motions have been prepared for consideration and have been validated by the Rules Advisory Committee and Central Council in the normal manner,” wrote Ryan in his Annual Report which was published today.

“However, many of the proposals are complicated and have far reaching consequences. They require careful debate, which is not best achieved in a virtual meeting.

“Included among these are the potential alternative football championship structures and the potential playing rule changes proposed by the Standing Committee on Playing Rules.

“There are one or two other proposals as well. The research and groundwork is complete; consultation has been widespread; the precise motions are drafted and approved for consideration.

“But it would be a disservice to seek to advance them via this constrained Congress. So they are not before you for consideration today.

“Later this year, as soon as it is permissible and safe for us to gather again in person, we will convene a Special Congress for the specific purpose of considering these topics.”