| 13.2°C Dublin

Bernard Brogan on Joe Brolly's 'slave' debate: Players are choosing careers to suit football

DUBLIN football star Bernard Brogan says GAA players are putting their futures in jeopardy by prioritising football ahead of their careers.

He disagrees with Joe Brolly's assertion that modern players are like 'indentured slaves' but says that the training demands on players are now so great that they are directly affecting their career choices.

"I definitely think that young guys, and even myself, are choosing careers to play football," he said. Brogan pointed out that the career profile of Dublin's All-Ireland winning team of the 1970s, which included his own father, was significantly different from many of today's inter-county squads as it contained many professionals who were already well into their career path while playing for Dublin.

"When I look at that team there were doctors, physios, engineers, accountants, all sorts of professions," he noted. "Now there's a lot of teachers and students and lads staying on in college to do extra Master's and PhDs. I feel that some guys are making career choices differently than if the commitments were different in the GAA."

Brogan, an accountant, who himself did a Master's in business management, has revealed that he deliberately chose to study finance in college because it initially only involved 12 contact hours a week and allowed him more time for training.

He said his Gaelic football ambitions made him deliberately avoid a course of study that would involve a lot of hours.

"If I had to do it again, I'd probably have done things differently," Brogan admitted.

Irish Independent