Sunday 25 February 2018

Louth GAA at very low ebb of late after loss in the c'ship

LOUTH GAA was at a very low ebb following the manner of the defeat to Kildare in the Leinster SFC recently.

I met supporters leaving Croke Park who were as dejected as I've ever seen - and I was at a few of the NFL games this season!

In the weeks after the clash, there were many ideas put forward about change and how the county can build from grassroots to provide a conveyor belt of talent in the years ahead.

At times, it always seems that one or two come through, Ryan Burns being the latest one. In the future, Ross and Daire Nally will also be two to watch.

During the Croke Park game, St Mary's Ardee supplied players for the kids match, the likes of Jonathan Commins and others from that will come through too.

One thing I just can't understand is the county underage system.

The season is relatively short, early season training, March/April, finishing up in mid summer. Dublin play GAA for up to eight months of the year.

For midweek games, some clubs can face trips the length of the county. Tough to organise.

A proposal then.

The Louth Minor Board appoint North, South and Mid Louth administrators and commence Area Leagues.

Take Drogheda. The old street leagues were huge in the town for many decades. Bring them back! Imagine areas like Bothar Brugha, Ballymakenny Road, Aston Village/Termon Abbey, Duleek Gate and Ballsgrove having local teams, even 7 a side, in association with the clubs in the town.

Play the games at weekends on days when they don't clash with the Drogheda Schoolchildren's Soccer League. If the under 12s soccer is on a Saturday, agree the GAA on a Sunday or vice versa.

Even stage them as a blitz day in the Blues one week, then the Plunketts, Nicks, Tones, etc.

Start the GAA league in February and run it through to October, with inter county club challenge games agreed with clubs in Dublin and Meath.

No idea will be perfect - but better than no ideas at all.

Drogheda Independent

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