Monday 5 December 2016

Colm O'Rourke: Pressure on Croke Park to ensure books are balanced

Investing in players is the best policy for counties but it must be done right, says Colm O'Rourke

Published 13/02/2011 | 05:00

W hen the cost of training inter-county teams was revealed last week by Colm Keys in the Irish Independent, there was the usual anxiety in GAA ranks about the huge quantities of money involved.

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But before we rush to judgement, there should be some analysis of whether the money is being well spent or not. Running county teams is a costly business but it is not like throwing money at Anglo Irish Bank. There is, in general, a good return on the investment. Unless other GAA activities within a county are being neglected, then there is no reason to suggest the money is anything other than well spent.

First of all, the money is being invested, not spent. Looking after the top players is the best way to have county sides at whatever grade young players aspire to. Running a county team badly with no money is a sure-fire way of breeding young players who won't care if they ever play for the county. This is the difference between knowing the cost of something and its value.

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