Majority of counties facing financial ruin, warns GAA administrator
Published 28/01/2016 | 02:30
The majority of counties are facing financial ruin unless spending on teams is reduced, a leading GAA administrator has warned.
John Prenty, Connacht Council secretary, predicts that up to 90pc of the counties could be in danger of going bust if they don't curb team costs.
Citing Connacht as an example of the soaring expenditure, he said it was "financially unsustainable" that team costs in Mayo, Galway, Roscommon, Sligo and Leitrim were almost five times the gate receipts for last year's Connacht senior championships. They totalled €747,000 while €3.8m was spent on county teams.
"That's not sustainable. The ratio between games and training is totally out of line for county panels. An industry has grown up too around teams. There are so many involved now that two buses are need to bring everyone to games.
"While all this money is being spent, club players are being left idle for long stretches. Any wonder they're becoming so disillusioned. If this continues we'll lose them to soccer and other sports," said Prenty.
He believes that many of the problems stems from a lack of leadership at county board level.
"Decisions are taken at Congress and Central Council but are they implemented? It comes down to leadership and taking responsibility by county boards. It's the only way this can be taken on and sorted out," he said.
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