Wednesday 21 February 2018

Donegal solution can help 'ludicrous' fixture situation -- Murphy

Cliona Foley

Cliona Foley

MICHAEL Murphy has described the GAA's club fixture situation nationally as "ludicrous," but believes Donegal's controversial solution for next summer will improve things for both club and county players.

"Club players don't know week- on-week what's going on, and county players don't have a clue either -- it's ludicrous," Murphy said.

The Donegal forward said things could be improved greatly if county boards could only sort out and stick to their club fixture schedules.

"With the GAA (club) calendar you never know what's going on the next week," the Glenswilly star said.

"You might have a (club) league game on a Saturday, but you don't know who you'll be playing the following Saturday.

"It has to be a bit more structured and have a bit more thought behind it."

He conceded that players now have to spend so much time training with their county teams that it feels like "we're turning our back sometimes on what is the cornerstone of the GAA, our clubs.

"But the big problem is the congestion on the fixture calendar. Both can be done at (different) times during the year, but coming up with an idea that actually works seems to be difficult."

Donegal have taken the controversial decision to delay the start of their senior championship next summer until Jim McGuinness' county team are out of the race for the All-Ireland.

Murphy believes that this will help both club and county players locally and create a clear schedule of league fixtures to which they will stick during the summer months.

"When you're going into a season and you don't know when your (club) championship is, that's the big problem for all players," he said.

"If I know we're playing (league games) week after week and know when the championship is starting, then that's perfect."


Irish Independent

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